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

CRICKET: Paceman Brooks still harbours England ambition

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Wednesday 1st October 2014

JACK Brooks says he still dreams of an England cap after being drafted back into the Lions set-up.

RUGBY: Dark Blues make it three out of three

Oxford Mail: rugby generic

8:20am Wednesday 1st October 2014

OXFORD University made it three wins from three this season with a 38-0 victory over Henley Hawks last night.

FOOTBALL: Fairview hit back to draw

Oxford Mail: football generic

8:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Struggling Wheatley Youth and Fairview each picked up their first point of the season as they played out a 2-2 draw in the Oxford City FA.

SCHOOLS' FOOTBALL: Spruyt sets Vale up for high five

Oxford Mail: football generic

8:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Vale of White Horse opened their ESFA Under 15 PlayStation Inter Association Trophy campaign with a 5-1 win over Cannock & District in the first round.

FOOTBALL: Riverside duo see red after trading blows

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Riverside finished with nine men after two players were sent off for fighting among themselves during their 2-2 draw at Freeland in the Oxfordshire Senior League Premier Division.

RACING: Candy signs off Master for season

Oxford Mail: Music Master (second right) beats Red Rocker (left) to take the Alex Scott Maiden Stakes

8:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Music Master, Wantage trainer Henry Candy’s star sprinter, misses the Qatar Prix de l’Abbaye at Longchamp on Sunday and will not run again this season.

RACING: Trouble has Case eyeing more glory on big stage

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Success on the big stage has whet Ben Case’s appetite for more high-profile triumphs this season.

FOOTBALL: Banbury move off bottom after bizarre dismissal

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:30am Wednesday 1st October 2014

BANBURY United moved off the bottom of the Premier Division table with an impressive 2-0 victory over Cambridge City last night.

YOUTH FOOTBALL: Chambers at the double

Oxford Mail: football generic

7:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Jacob Chambers scored twice in Highfield Juniors’ 4-1 win at Charlbury Town in the Giles Sports Witney Youth Under 12 Knockout Cup first-round.

FOOTBALL: Super Carterton move clear at top with rout

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 1st October 2014

Carterton Town A opened up a two-point gap at the top of the Witney & District FA Premier Division after a 4-0 win over Hanborough.

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