OXFORD United chairman Darryl Eales has expressed his frustration over a lack of progress on key issues for the club, including buying the stadium from former owner Firoz Kassam.

Mr Eales spoke out in his programme notes for the U’s home game against Northampton Town on Boxing Day, which they lost 1-0 to an injury-time goal.

United’s chairman restated his ambition for the club to ‘own and operate’ the Kassam Stadium and said he was trying to arrange a meeting next month so that progress could be made.

He said: “We need to look forward and not back.

“To this end, I am seeking an open meeting in January to which I will invite both city and county councils, OxVox (supporters’ trust), fans in general, the club and Firoz Kassam so that we can have an open discussion about the future of the stadium, especially to consider all options including building a new stadium.”

Mr Eales said he believed that if all parties were ‘reasonable’ and wanted to help the football club then a transaction could be easily concluded.

He added: “I would urge all fans to get behind a positive campaign to realise the dream of the stadium ownership for the long term as soon as possible.

“This is a wonderful club and for too long now the issue of stadium and club being separate has not been resolved.”

Mr Eales’s comments came after United managing director Greig Box Turnbull said he was disappointed the city council rejected the club’s bid to control and develop plans for new sports facilities off Horspath Road.

However, city council leader Bob Price said the council did want to provide a new training facility for the club, and plans were not ‘set in stone’.