Preview: Oxford United vs. Fleetwood Town – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Monday’s League One clash between Oxford United and Fleetwood Town, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Two sides operating at opposite ends of League One clash on Monday afternoon when playoff-hunting Oxford United host relegation-threatened Fleetwood Town at The Kassam Stadium.

The home side are seventh in the league, only outside of the playoffs due to an inferior goal difference compared to Lincoln City, while the visitors are 23rd and six points from safety.

Match preview

Oxford United have seen a gradual slip down the table since their start to the season that had them residing in top spot after winning nine of their first 11 league outings.

Multiple inconsistent spells from then onwards have seen the hosts slowly fall away from the automatic spots, and they are now in danger of failing to even qualify for a place in the playoffs.

After their fantastic first 11 matches, they have won just nine times in the following 29 games, with that poor run seeing a change of management from Liam Manning to Des Buckingham.

Buckingham has failed to turn around Oxford’s slump though, with his men currently embarking on their worst run of the season that has seen them pick up just three victories in the last 14 outings.

With teams around them starting to pick up form as the season enters its closing stages, the U’s must start taking victories on a more consistent basis if they are to push their way back into the playoff spots for the first time since 2020-21.

The upcoming game against Fleetwood gives them the perfect opportunity to kickstart any potential winning streak, as the visitors have won just one of their previous 10 matches.

Charlie Adam‘s men are 20th in the away table, picking up just three victories and eight draws when playing on the road, while they have failed to beat Monday’s opponents at The Kassam Stadium since a 2-0 victory in August 2018.

Fleetwood’s home record has been no better either, taking 17 points from their 21 matches at Highbury Stadium this season, leaving them 23rd in the table prior to this one.

They must improve on those poor results, starting with the upcoming match, if they are to extend their stay in League One for an 11th straight season, as they currently find themselves six points from safety with just six games left to play.

Oxford United League One form:

Fleetwood Town League One form:

Team News

Buckingham will have a fully fit squad to choose from for this crucial upcoming game in their hunt for playoff qualification.

Tyler Goodrham has been back on the bench for both of Oxford’s previous two outings after returning from injury, and the midfielder got his first minutes on the pitch in the draw with Shrewsbury Town.

As for Fleetwood, Adam could name an unchanged lineup from their previous match against Cheltenham Town, which they will feel they were unfortunate to lose after initially equalising late on.

Ryan Graydon scored his second goal in as many appearances, and he will be hoping that is enough to earn him a spot in the starting 11.

Oxford United possible starting lineup:
Cumming; Long, Moore, Brown, Bennett; Brannagan, Bodin; Dale, Rodrigues, Murphy; Harris

Fleetwood Town possible starting lineup:
Lynch; Sarpong-Wiredu, Heneghan, Campbell; Broom, Lawal, Kilkenny, Patterson; Omochere, Stockley, Graydon

We say: Oxford United 2-0 Fleetwood Town

While neither side have been in great form coming into this match, Oxford have picked up almost double the points of Fleetwood this season and are favourites to win this game.

The visitors have won one game away from home since November – with a 2-0 victory against Bristol Rovers in February – while they have failed to win away against Oxford United since 2018.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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