FOOTBALL: City boss Merritt putting faith in Spanish imports

Oxford City general manager Justin Merritt (right) and head coach Enrique Guillen

Oxford City general manager Justin Merritt (right) and head coach Enrique Guillen

First published in Sport Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Sports reporter specialising in Non League Football. Call me on 01865 425488

Oxford City’s general manager Justin Merrit is hoping that a mixture of experience and Spanish flair will help fire them to success in the new season.

Over the summer, Merritt and head coach Enrique Guillen have brought in a number of new signings including four Spanish imports, centre back Alejandro Adrian, from Real Betis B, former Zalla Union Club defender Josetxo Lapoujade Garde, ex-Zamora CF midfielder Javier Rodriguez Mendez and Ander del Alamo (Club Deportivo Laudio).

The quartet have signed contracts with the Marsh Lane outfit, who start their campaign with a trip to newly-relegated Hyde United tomorrow.

Closer to home, they have also brought in former Burton Albion striker Adi Yussuf and ex-Reading FC scholar Ben Brown.

Combative midfielder Liam Malone has re-joined from North Leigh, while striker Felipe Barcelos is back from playing in Italy and Kynan Isaac has returned from Banbury United, though he misses the trip to Cheshire as he is having a trial at Luton Town.

“We have extended our search to Spain for certain players that we wouldn’t necessarily find here,” said Merritt.

“The economy over there is not so good, so you can get better value for your money in terms of wages.

“We will see how it goes because there is always a question of how they will adapt.

“Because there’s a bit of merry-go-round locally, it’s difficult to get the better players.

“Wages have gone through the roof and we can’t compete with some of the other clubs in our division, so we have looked at it another way.”

But Merritt, who took over in May following the departure of Mike Ford, said patience was going to be required.

“I’m happy with the progress that has been made,” he said.

“I think it will take a fair amount of time before people notice a difference in the way we play.

“We want to get everyone to buy into what we are trying to do.

“We’re looking for an improvement on the position they finished last season. We don’t want a relegation fight.

“I don’t want to start saying things like we are going to finish in the top-six.

“Our job is to get a better product on the pitch.

“But it won’t happen overnight.”

IN: Lapoujade (Osasuna B), Brown (QPR), Adrian (Real Union), Malone (North Leigh), Del Alamo (CD Laudio), Barcelos (ASD Santhià Calcio), Isaac (Banbury Utd), Wilson (Bishops Stortford), Rodriquez (Zamora CF), Yussuf (Lincoln), Acha (unattached).

OUT: Adam Learoyd (Didcot Tn).

  •  Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone’s contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.

Latest Sport news

RUGBY UNION: Welsh yet to extend Hala'ufia loan

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

LONDON Welsh say they have yet to extend Chris Hala’ufia’s loan deal, despite news he will not be returning to Llanelli Scarlets.

YOUTH FOOTBALL: Mole's double brings first win

Oxford Mail: football generic

8:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

Jacob Tudge bagged a brace as Tower Hill ended their search for a win with a 4-1 success at Kingston Colts in the Giles Sports Witney Under 14 A Youth League.

YOUTH FOOTBALL: Wheeldon lifts Kidlington with a stunning six-timer

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

Hot-shot Harry Wheeldon scored an incredible six-timer as Barton United won 7-5 at home to Kidlington Youth Colts in the Under 13 C League.

WOMEN'S FOOTBALL: Tower Hill in cup of woe

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

Tower Hill Ladies let slip a 1-0 lead as they went down to a 6-1 defeat at Southern Region Premiership side Mansfield Road in the first round of the Oxfordshire FA Women’s Cup.

GIRLS FOOTBALL: Hot-shot Haynes serves up a fantastic six-timer

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

Abi Haynes put on a stunning display as Kidlington defeated Wantage Town 7-0 in the Oxford Mail Girls Under 15 league.

SCHOOLS' FOOTBALL: Vale lifted by late double

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

TWO late goals saw Vale of White Horse claim a 2-0 win away to Southampton in the ESFA Under 15 PlayStation Inter Association Trophy second round.

FOOTBALL: Super Seacole bags a brace

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

George Seacole delivered a double as North Leigh United won 4-1 at Henley Town in the first round of the Oxfordshire Senior Cup.

FOOTBALL: Marston mauled as red-hot Coles stars

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

Marston Saints went down to a heavy 5-1 defeat at unbeaten Oakley United in the Oxfordshire Senior League Premier Division after a disastrous second half.

FOOTBALL: It's a Vale of tears as Stanford suffer shock

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

North Berks League Division 2 leaders Stanford in the Vale suffered a surprise second-round exit at the hands of Division 3 side Hungerford Town Swifts.

FOOTBALL: Duerden marks a Royal occasion with four-timer

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 22nd October 2014

Mike Duerden bagged four goals for Premier Division leaders Carterton A in a 7-0 home thrashing of Witney Royals A.

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree