MICHAEL Appleton wants to see an improvement defensively when Oxford United host Scunthorpe United today.

A strong rearguard played a key role in the side’s excellent run earlier this season, but they have conceded ten goals in the last five games in all competitions.

Appleton (right) has been repeatedly frustrated at soft goals – and wants to put a stop to it against the promotion-chasing Iron.

He said: “They are a very attacking team and have scored a lot of goals, but you can get at them.

“You’ve just got to make sure you defend well against them and to be fair for the last few games we haven’t, that’s something we need to address.”

The U’s boss hinted he would make changes in the wake of Tuesday’s 2-1 defeat at Oldham Athletic, with striker Toni Martinez pushing for a start.

Scunthorpe are expected to be without left back Conor Townsend and midfielder Sam Mantom, but top-scorer Josh Morris could return after an ankle problem.

Manager Graham Alexander will watch from the stands as he serves a one-match touchline ban after admitting a Football Association misconduct charge.


Oxford Utd: from Eastwood, Edwards, Dunkley, Nelson, Johnson, Hall, Lundstram, Ledson, Maguire, McAleny, Hemmings, Martinez, Sercombe, Rothwell, Ruffels, Skarz, Raglan, Ribeiro, Stevens.

Scunthorpe Utd: from Daniels, Clarke, Mirfin, Wallace, Toffolo, Ness, Dawson, Crooks, Hopper, Madden, Morris, Van Veen, Davies, Toney, Holmes, Adelakun, Goode, Wiseman, Anyon.