De­lighted Pep is off the mark with U’s

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Matt Cham­bers

PEP Clotet saluted his play­ers af­ter they got him off to the per­fect start as Ox­ford Un­tied boss.

Goals from Wes Thomas and Josh Ruf­fels se­cured a com­fort­able win for the U’s, who were the classier out­fit as they won for the first time ever at Boundary Park.

The re­sult left the former Swansea and Leeds assistant a happy man in his first match in charge af­ter tak­ing over from Michael Ap­ple­ton in the sum­mer.

“It’s a very nice way to start and credit to the play­ers for achiev­ing it,” the Spa­niard said.

“The way we have started the sea­son is a dream come true. I’m proud of the way we played at a tough place to come.

“It’s also only one game and we need to keep show­ing the same at­ti­tude ev­ery time we play.

“They have shown a good at­ti­tude and knew how to man­age the per­for­mance, even when we had ten men be­cause Mike Wil­liamson was off hav­ing stitches.

“They knew ex­actly what to do and it was a good per­for­mance, which could have brought more than two goals.”

Af­ter a tame open­ing Old­ham’s Craig Davies got in be­hind the de­fence but didn’t quite catch hold of his shot prop­erly, al­low­ing Si­mon East­wood to scram­ble to his left to save.

Two min­utes later, Thomas put the vis­i­tors in front.

Break­ing the off­side trap to latch onto a Joe Roth­well pass, the former Birm­ing­ham man raced through to coolly slot past debu­tant home goal­keeper Ben Wil­son.

The ef­fer­ves­cent Jack Payne forced a sharp save from Wil­son at the start of the sec­ond half and af­ter Old­ham sub­sti­tute Tope Obadeyi slashed wildly wide af­ter see­ing the ball land kindly on his favoured left foot, Ox­ford dou­bled their lead.

Payne was again at the hub of a move that saw him slip in Ruf­fels to fire home low into Wil­son’s right-hand corner from on the penalty spot.

Old­ham had a late shout for a penalty af­ter Christian Ribeiro ap­peared to han­dle in the box but home man­ager John Sheri­dan felt his side were not quite sharp enough in the fi­nal third.

“It is hard to tak, as you are at home on the first day of the sea­son and want­ing to get off to a good start,” he said.

“I don’t think there was a lot be­tween the two teams.

The fine lit­tle mar­gins, and ob­vi­ously the two goals, cost us.

“We didn’t work their goal­keeper enough.”

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