Crocombe striving to be spot-on at Oxford United

Max Crocombe is fully focused when put through his paces in Oxford United’s pre-season training camp at Bisham Abbey this week

Max Crocombe is fully focused when put through his paces in Oxford United’s pre-season training camp at Bisham Abbey this week

First published in Sport Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Sports Reporter covering Oxford United. Follow us on twitter: @oxfordmailoufc. Call me on 01865 425458

MAX Crocombe is hoping to make the most of his opportunity to claim a spot in the Oxford United side during Ryan Clarke’s absence.

The New Zealander has played in all United’s first-team friendly games during pre-season, with Clarke recovering from a foot operation.

But he looks set to come under more competition for the jersey, with Michael Appleton revealing this week he was keen to sign a goalkeeper as cover.

It was initially hoped Clarke would only miss the opening month of the campaign, but the U’s head coach is preparing to be without him until late November.

Free agent Peter Brezovan was training with the squad this week, while the Sheffield Star have linked the U’s with a loan move for Sheffield United’s George Long.

Crocombe, speaking before both men were named in the frame, has just been focusing on doing all he can in pre-season to impress.

He said: “You always have to approach it like that, whether you know there’s another keeper there or not.

“When you’re playing it’s all about the one game you’re in.

“Every game you play you have to approach as though it’s yours and hopefully perform to a good enough level.

“I’m confident I can do that and we seem to have a good thing going here.”

Crocombe, 20, is highly-rated by United, but has had to be patient for chances in competitive games.

After making his debut in a 1-1 draw at home to Burton Albion in January 2013, he went on to play in the final three games of the season without conceding a goal.

It came while Clarke was sidelined following shoulder surgery, but the No 1’s outstanding form last season meant his deputy did not play a minute for the first team.

Crocombe’s challenge was hampered by his own injury, which has now fully healed during the summer.

He said: “Last year I had a bit of an issue with my shoulder, so it was good I got a good rest for two or three weeks.

“Then I just started picking it back up.

“I was working close to every day to get it sorted. Now it’s feeling good I can kick on with everything else.

“It’s definitely a lot stronger.

“It’s something you have to keep on top of, for how long I don’t know, but I should be able to play with confidence.”

Latest United news:

Oxford United stepping up interest in striker Ryan Taylor

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Friday 22nd May 2015

Ryan Taylor remains firmly on Oxford United’s radar despite the signing of Kemar Roofe, according to head coach Michael Appleton.

Ryan Clarke admits to uncertain Oxford United future

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Wednesday 20th May 2015

RYAN Clarke admits he would listen if the right opportunity came up this summer after being told he would not be certain of being Oxford United’s No 1 goalkeeper next season.

Oxford United goalkeeper's shirt is up for grabs

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Tuesday 19th May 2015

Ryan Clarke has been told he will not be guaranteed to be Oxford United’s No 1 goalkeeper next season as head coach Michael Appleton keeps his options open.

Oxford United's pre-season to include games with Coventry City and Eastleigh

Oxford Mail:

12:00pm Monday 18th May 2015

OXFORD United have announced their first pre-season fixtures, which include games against Eastleigh and Coventry City.

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8:30am Friday 15th May 2015

Oxford United have sold more than 1,000 season tickets in just nine days.

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