There's only 1 United.....In Oxford
There's only 1 United we need to be focused on at this moment in time. Last season I feared The U's and were my dark horses in having a say in the promotion places due to their form and taking points off some decent teams. So how have Oxford United started 2017/18?
In 8 games The U's have tasted defeat just the once, an away trip to Scunthorpe where a late Josh Morris goal sealed the outcome but with a 3-0 win over Gillingham this past weekend, the Us find themselves sneaking into the play off places in 6th, only 2 points behind the Bantams.
Will it be us?
With a massive morale boosting win away to Peterborough, Stuart McCall will not fear anyone at all at the moment, including Oxford. Poleon is on fire and Wyke will want to add to his hat trick from last game but 1. We have scored 11 goals in 4 away games in 2017/18 and undefeated on the road we have amassed 7 points from a possible 9 in away league games. Even though Oxford are doing well at the moment, their form is a bit patchy unable to string a couple of victories together.
Will it be Us?
Unbeaten at home taking 7 points from a possible 9 and having the best home goal difference in League 1 scoring 7 and conceding just the once in their 3 games to date. Although the Us don't have a prolific scorer at this early stage, they are capable from getting goals from across the park especially with their forward and midfield. Oxford have only lost just the once at home since the end of March, that honour going to Fleetwood back in April. This game will be a tougher match than Peterborough and I'm sure Oxford United will be relishing the fixture at home more than we are away.
Head to head and form
36 games in total, the Bantams have managed to get 12 wins in all competitions compared to 17 for Oxford meaning 7 have ended in draws. Last season we faced each other 3 times, 2 going in the favour of Oxford at the Kassam Stadium and once for City at Valley Parade. City have 1 win from our last 5 journeys to Oxford with 3 wins going to the home side.
Form for the Bantams is cracking with 3 wins in the past 3 games making it WWWDLWLW. The Us form is decent, reading WDWDLWDW and a pattern is emerging of a draw after a win. Will the same happen Tuesday night?
Boz's match verdict: Home win
5 Fun facts
1. Current players to play for both teams are Wes Thomas and Simon Eastwood, both having loan spells with the Bantams. Eastwood from Huddersfield Town back in Jul 09-Jun 10 and Thomas from Birmingham City back in Jan 16-Mar 16.
2. The last 2 times Bradford have won away to Oxford United, we have gone on to gain promotion those seasons. Sept 2012 winning 0-2 thanks to Andrew Davies and Nahki Wells and back in December 1998 winning 0-1 thanks to a lone Lee Mills strike.
3. Oxford United manager Pep Clotet has never played a single minute of professional football, only ever playing for amateur side Spanish club CF Igualada. The Us is Clotet's first experience of management in the English game, previously being an assistant at Leeds United and prior to that, Swansea City.
4. Sitting in 6th position currently in the 3rd division, Oxford haven't finished this high in the football league for almost 20 years, you have to go back to the 1998/99 season where they got relegated from the 2nd tier finishing 23rd. Did you know it was a certain ex City striker, Dean Windass that ended up as their leading scorer that season. Last season Oxford United just missed out on the play offs finishing 8th.
5. An ex City striker called Dean to be the leading scorer for the Us just doesn't just fall to the feet of Windass. Dean Saunders had a spell back in the late 80s between 1987/88. In total he scored 33 goals in 73 games before moving onto Derby County then onto the Liverpool.