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Davis urging United to hit the heights
Liam Davis is urging everyone at Oxford United to “reach for the stars” as the squad aim to make the most of their remaining home games – starting against Morecambe this afternoon.
Results at the Kassam Stadium have provided the platform for United’s promotion push, with 16 points picked up from their last six games at home.
There are just four more opportunities left to take advantage of playing in front of their own fans.
The U’s go into today’s game in the npower League Two play-off places, but there is still a firm belief the six-point gap to third can be bridged in the next five weeks.
Davis believes United’s form – home and away – makes them a feared team among the promotion hopefuls and is adamant automatic promotion remains realistic.
“There are four home games, 12 points is the aim so let’s reach for the stars – that’s the message I’m putting out,” he said.
“With this league when there’s a team in form other teams have a kind of fear.
“If they class us as having a rich vein of form at the moment they will have an element of fear, which is obviously good for us and we need to take advantage of that without taking it for granted.
“We’ll do all we can to continue this form.”
United’s main fitness concerns are at centre back, where Harry Worley and Michael Duberry are struggling with minor ankle and groin injuries respectively.
A decision will be left until this morning to give the pair the maximum time to prove their fitness.
If both miss out Andy Whing will partner Jake Wright in the heart of a defence which has kept three successive clean sheets.
U’s boss Chris Wilder admitted, as expected after almost 40 league games, a few players are playing while not 100 per cent fit, but he was pleased with their attitude.
He said: “We’re at a stage of the season where players sometimes have to get through games and dig in.
“Damian (Batt) got a whack on Tuesday and Lev (Peter Leven) isn’t fully fit.
“Players usually aren’t at this stage of the season, it’s how mentally they get through it and I’ve got to say they’ve done great.”
Morecambe topped the table in September, but their season fell away during a barren winter, which included a goalless draw with the U’s in December.
Despite being out of the running for the play-offs the Shrimps remain a dangerous side, having beaten Cheltenham, Southend and Crewe since the turn of the year.
Oxford Utd: from Clarke, Batt, Whing, Wright, Davis, Hall, Chapman, Leven, Johnson, Constable, Montano, Rendell, Morgan, Worley, Duberry, Wilson, Brown, McLaren, Tonkin.
Morecambe: from Roche, McCready, Fenton, Haining, Parrish, Drummond, Reid, Ellison, Jevons, Hunter, Carlton, Burrow, Alessandra, Curran, Redshaw, McDonald, Kettings, McGee.
Oxford United have sold out of their entire 1,619 ticket allocation for the game at Northampton on Good Friday.
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