Northampton Town go into battle against Oxford United on Good Friday so what better opportunity to have a brief look at Oxford and their chequered history..
Oxford United were originally born as Headington United in 1893 and quite astonishingly didn’t start using the name Oxford United until as late as 1960. Having been at the top of the football pyramid and the bottom, it is fair to assume the Oxford supporters have been through the mill, certainly in recent times having dropped out of the Football League altogether in 2006. It is a credit to their fan base how their crowds have held up through recent struggles, a sure sign of a proper football club when the fans stick together through thick and thin, respect Oxford, respect. Big Ron Atkinson holds a special place in Oxfords hearts, who was affectionately nicknamed ‘The Tank’ during his time at the Manor Ground, holds the record for most appearances at a healthy 560 and his brother, Graham, is the all time leading scorer for Oxford with 107. The Manor Ground was a proper football stadium and it was the home of Oxford United for 76 years until they moved into the Kassam Stadium in 2001, something of a soulless concrete arena like many of the modern stadia but on the plus side it still allows a decent atmosphere. The most successful manager in their history is Jim ‘Bald Eagle’ Smith, who led them to the top level of English football for the first time in their history back in 1985, a pretty remarkable achievement and amazingly it seems the Oxford chairman at the time, Robert Maxwell, did not do his utmost to keep Jim Smith at the time and allowed him to resign and join QPR, something that still rankles with Oxford fans to this day. Cobblers managerial legend Ian Atkins had a spell in charge of Oxford between 2001 and 2004, I’m not sure Oxford fans will hold Atkins in such high regard as us Cobblers fans do.
very brief over view of our opponents on Friday, a match preview will be up online later today and please bear with me while I get used to inserting pictures and the like to make the articles more interesting…
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