ANDY Melville has urged Oxford United to improve their home record – starting against York City tomorrow.
The U’s have found results easier to come by on the road in recent weeks.
Last weekend's 1-0 win at Plymouth Argyle means four of their last five victories in npower League Two has come from away trips.
A strong home record is usually the backbone for most sides, but with just six wins from 15 league games, the Kassam Stadiumhas not been a fortress for the U’s.
It is a pattern which will have to improve if the side are going to climb the table in the coming weeks, with eight of the 14 remaining games to be played in front of the home fans.
Melville, United’s first-team coach, acknowledged the importance of the fixtures and wants to start turning the form around tomorrow.
He said: “You’re expecting to win, it doesn’t matter if it’s York or Port Vale, whoever, your home games are big.
“Perhaps with the position we’re in we haven’t won enough home games this season.
“We’ve got a lot coming up and hopefully we can start with a good home win against York.
“Sometimes it happens and you don’t know why, you have periods through your career where you’re better away than at home.
“You just have to strive to put the other side of it right, which is what we’re trying to do.
“We need to go on a run, that’s what it’s all about, hopefully we started a run at Plymouth and we can keep it going this weekend.”
United will have a stronger squad to select from tomorrow, with Michael Duberry returning to training this week.
Melville stressed the importance of having the experienced players available.
He said: “Michael’s a big character and a big personality when he’s playing week-in week-out.
“We’ve missed him for large chunks of the season, but he’s great to have in and around the lads.
“He’s always encouraging people, especially the young lads and you can’t have enough Michael Duberrys in the changing room, helping people out and doing the right thing.
“It’s the same with Andy Whing, who’s also back from injury.
“We brought them to the club because we thought we needed strong personalities in certain games.
“They’ve come in and haven’t disappointed, it’s great to have them back.”