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  • "It's encouraging to hear that the guys coming in have a passion for football. They're coming in when expectations are low and it seemed as we were about to engage in a relegation battle so I for one am completely behind their investment.
    Great to hear Appleton has been recruited and that there could be 250k added to the playing staff budget. My view is if they look to get high quality players and coaches in, the rest will surely follow. Looking forward to seeing how their plans develop but mostly looking forward to seeing improvements on the pitch. Good luck to Ashton, Eales and Appleton"
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New Oxford United chairman tells fans: My door is open

Darryl Eales (left), Mark Ashton and Ian Lenagan walk out of the Kassam Stadium tunnel after yesterday’s press conference

Darryl Eales (left), Mark Ashton and Ian Lenagan walk out of the Kassam Stadium tunnel after yesterday’s press conference

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

NEW Oxford United chairman Darryl Eales has a simple solution for any supporters sceptical of his intentions – just ask him.

The prospect of a private equity expert from Birmingham suddenly becoming interested in the club raised suspicion in some quarters.

But after acquiring a significant stake in the club, described as between 30 and 50 per cent, he was keen to make assurances and spoke frankly about what motivated the move.

Eales said he wants to be part of United’s long-term plan, which means putting money in, rather than taking it out.

“You read some blogs talking about ‘is he going to take money out of the club?’,” he said.

“I’m thinking ‘if I wanted to make sensible investments you wouldn’t choose football’.

“I would say to supporters, ‘come and speak to me’.

“If you want to know my views on something, come and ask me because I’m new to all this, but I think people who have worked for me will say what you see is what you get.

“I don’t have agendas, politics I really dislike and I’m completely open.”

He added: “I don’t regard football as a business, but it’s got to make sense economically.

“I’m not looking to make money out of this, but I’m not looking to lose money either.

“If we started earning a profit as a business – and clearly it’s loss-making at the moment – I’m very happy for 100 per cent of that to be reinvested in the club.

“You can be the judge of this, but I don’t think I’ve got a big ego, so I’m not doing this for a big ego trip.

“I’m doing this to test myself in a different arena – in the sport I love.”

Top of the 53-year-old’s ‘to do’ list is make funds available to help Michael Appleton, who has replaced Gary Waddock as head coach, strengthen the squad.

Discussions have already taken place with incoming chief executive Mark Ashton, but it will not be a spending spree.

He said: “I’ve said to Mark, within sensible bounds, tell me what you need from a playing perspective and I’ll flex it.

“That’s not millions – I might say ‘you’ve got an extra £250,000 to spend’.”

Patient progress is the aim of the game for the new chairman, who briefly considered getting involved with Birmingham City 18 months ago before deciding against investing in the club he supports.

Eales is confident United have what it takes to move up the football pyramid, but stopped short of setting a deadline.

He said: “Realistically, to me this should be a sustainable Championship club.

“That’s what we’ve talked about, but what I think is foolhardy is to say we’re going to do that within three or five years.

“That’s just your inspiration, and all our efforts will be on trying to achieve that.”

Michael Appleton upbeat Oxford United's strikers will deliver

Oxford Mail:

9:10am Friday 6th March 2015

OXFORD United’s attacking resources are the deepest they have been all season, but taking chances remains head coach Michael Appleton’s biggest headache.

Oxford United's Max Crocombe gets first senior international call-up

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

9:00am Friday 6th March 2015

OXFORD United goalkeeper Max Crocombe has received his first call-up to the senior New Zealand squad.

Joe Riley relishing reunion with Oxford United

Oxford Mail:

8:50am Friday 6th March 2015

JOE Riley admits Oxford United’s trip at Gigg Lane was one of the first fixtures he looked for after joining Bury in January.

Oxford United's Michael Collins has no qualms pitching in on tricky surfaces

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Friday 6th March 2015

DETERIORATING pitches hold no fear for Michael Collins, who is enjoying scrapping in testing circumstances.

Josh Ruffels happy with role under the radar at Oxford United

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Friday 6th March 2015

JOSH Ruffels is happy to play an unspectacular role for Oxford United if it helps the side get positive results.

Oxford United boss envious of Bury's stable ship

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Friday 6th March 2015

MICHAEL Appleton admits he is “almost jealous” of the stability tomorrow’s opponents Bury have enjoyed this season.

Play footgolf with ex-Oxford United players for charity

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 6th March 2015

OXFORD United are supporting a charity footgolf day next month and are encouraging supporters to sign up.

No more Oxford United signings, says Michael Appleton

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Thursday 5th March 2015

OXFORD United’s squad will remain unchanged for the rest of the season following Armand Gnanduillet’s arrival, according to head coach Michael Appleton.

VIDEO: Highlights from Oxford United's draw with Morecambe

Oxford Mail:

3:49pm Wednesday 4th March 2015

WATCH the best of the action from Oxford United's 1-1 draw with Morecambe at the Kassam Stadium.

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