Riley signing is worth the risk - Oxford United boss

Joe Riley at Oxford United’s Roman Way training ground yesterday after signing on a six-month loan deal from Bolton Wanderers

Joe Riley at Oxford United’s Roman Way training ground yesterday after signing on a six-month loan deal from Bolton Wanderers

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

Signing Joe Riley for Oxford United was a “no-brainer” according to head coach Michael Appleton, despite the full back’s injury record.

The 22-year-old agreed a six-month loan from Bolton Wanderers yesterday and is in line to make his debut against Wolverhampton Wanderers tonight (7.45).

Riley made his Premier League debut three seasons ago, but a promising career has stalled due to injury problems.

The right back has not played a competitive game since January 2013 and missed the whole of last season with a cruciate ligament injury.

But Appleton, whose career was cut short by a knee injury, views it as an opportunity to sign a Championship-standard player who would otherwise have been out of United’s reach.

“Without a shadow of a doubt,” he said.

“He’s a lad who went into it very young and people were expecting big things from him, it’s just unfortunate he suffered an injury.

“If he hadn’t then he would probably have been a regular in the Championship for Bolton as we speak.

“There is a small risk that goes with it, but sometimes you’ve got to take calculated risks, because if you don’t then you don’t achieve anything.”

He added: “Joe’s been one of those I’ve taken an interest in to see how he recovered and when I heard there was an availability to sign him I thought it was a no-brainer.”

Riley returned to full training before the end of last season without any issues and featured for Bolton in their pre-season tour to Denmark and Sweden.

After a testing time, the Salford-born defender is thrilled to have a chance to play regularly.

He said: “I’ve not missed a day’s training and I’ve been available for every game, so I feel as though I’m fully fit.

“Hopefully now all my injuries are behind me. I’m just raring to go, as a footballer you just want to play.”

United’s newest signing will compete with David Hunt for a starting spot at right back this season.

It means full back Matt Bevans is likely to be encouraged, along with striker Tyrone Marsh, to go out on loan until January.

Appleton said: “He’s a young player similar to Tyrone and a couple of the other ones.

“If they’re not going to get enough minutes here I would rather see them play football elsewhere and asking questions of myself.”

Send your Letter to the Editor

11:20am Monday 28th July 2014

What do you think? We welcome letters from our readers on a wide variety of subjects and you can send us a letter through the blue headline above.

Who was Oxford United's man of the match at Hartlepool?

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

5:37pm Saturday 20th December 2014

Hartlepool Utd 1 (Ironside 53), Oxford Utd 1 (Hylton 65)

Oxford Mail:

5:00pm Saturday 20th December 2014

DANNY Hylton ended his barren run in front of goal as Oxford United came from behind to earn a point against Hartlepool United.

Updates - Hartlepool Utd V Oxford Utd

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

1:57pm Saturday 20th December 2014

All the news from Oxford United's Sky Bet League Two clash at Hartlepool United.

Oxford United look to spoil Hartlepool's party

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Saturday 20th December 2014

Andy Whing says Oxford United should expect to beat Hartlepool United this afternoon despite the Football League’s bottom club appointing a new manager this week.

Oxford United boss Michael Appleton is weighing up his striking options

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Saturday 20th December 2014

Michael Appleton’s main selection decision for Oxford United today is picking who leads the line against Hartlepool.

RUGBY UNION: London Welsh crash to heaviest defeat at Saracens

Oxford Mail:

8:21pm Sunday 21st December 2014

London Welsh crashed to their heaviest defeat in an already disastrous Aviva Premiership season when they conceded 11 tries in a 78-7 loss to a star-studded Saracens at Allianz Park on Saturday.

Who was Oxford United's man of the match at Hartlepool?

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

5:37pm Saturday 20th December 2014

Hartlepool Utd 1 (Ironside 53), Oxford Utd 1 (Hylton 65)

Oxford Mail:

5:00pm Saturday 20th December 2014

DANNY Hylton ended his barren run in front of goal as Oxford United came from behind to earn a point against Hartlepool United.

Updates - Hartlepool Utd V Oxford Utd

Oxford Mail: oxford united logo 1200pix

1:57pm Saturday 20th December 2014

All the news from Oxford United's Sky Bet League Two clash at Hartlepool United.

Oxford United look to spoil Hartlepool's party

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Saturday 20th December 2014

Andy Whing says Oxford United should expect to beat Hartlepool United this afternoon despite the Football League’s bottom club appointing a new manager this week.

Oxford United boss Michael Appleton is weighing up his striking options

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Saturday 20th December 2014

Michael Appleton’s main selection decision for Oxford United today is picking who leads the line against Hartlepool.

RUGBY: Nathan Morris hoping to get chance to pit his wits against the best

Oxford Mail:

8:10am Saturday 20th December 2014

LONDON Welsh replacement hooker Nathan Morris is looking forward to the opportunity to test himself against some of the best in the game when they travel to Saracens today, writes MATTHEW BRUCE.

TABLE TENNIS: In-form duo maintain relentless title battle

Oxford Mail:

8:10am Saturday 20th December 2014

Forum A and Holton A kept up their battle for the Division 1 crown, as they both hit an incredible 32 points apiece in the latest round of matches.

ANGLING: Paul Brant quick out of the blocks to land shield

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Saturday 20th December 2014

Paul Brant struck early to win Littlemore AS’s Christmas Shield fished by 14 on the River Thames at Sandford.

CRICKET: Imran Hussain shines for Ruscote

Oxford Mail: cricket generic

8:00am Saturday 20th December 2014

Imran Hussain helped Ruscote to a four-run win against Chipping Norton in Division 2 of the Banbury Indoor League.

Comments (1)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:56pm Tue 29 Jul 14

Richard Wickson says...

Not sure if Tyrone will ever make it at this level but Matt Bevans looked good every time he played last season and the more he played the better he looked. Really disappointed if he goes out on loan, I would have liked to have seen him play a part here this season, I think it would have been good for the club and him. Appleton is obviously the boss so maybe he hasn't seen what we saw last season. Good luck to both him and Marsh and I hope they come back here and show the Manager they have what he wants!
Not sure if Tyrone will ever make it at this level but Matt Bevans looked good every time he played last season and the more he played the better he looked. Really disappointed if he goes out on loan, I would have liked to have seen him play a part here this season, I think it would have been good for the club and him. Appleton is obviously the boss so maybe he hasn't seen what we saw last season. Good luck to both him and Marsh and I hope they come back here and show the Manager they have what he wants! Richard Wickson
  • Score: 2

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