Oxford United turned on the style as they ran up their biggest win for five years in destroying a poor Northwich Victoria sde at home .

Five different players got on the scoresheet as Jim Smith's men made it four wins out of four to take over at the top from early season leaders Weymouth, who they meet today.

Vics, last season's Conference North champions, were totally outclassed, yet it was the quality of the goals, and some of their eyecatching attacking moves, which thrilled another 5,000-plus Oxford crowd who are convinced their side will now take some stopping.

It was the type of champagne football you normally see from sides as they clinch promotion at the end of the season, not from one still looking to fire on all cylinders early in the campaign.

Rob Duffy, Carl Pettefer, Steve Basham, Gavin Johnson and Yemi Odubade all found the net.

But it was the two goals either side of half-time which proved killers.

Leading from a Duffy strike on 16 minutes, the U's got their second at a corner in first-half stoppage time when Basham hooked the ball back and Pettefer drove in his first goal for the club after Gareth Griffiths made a hash of a clearance.

And if Northwich had any belief they could get back in the game in the second half, it was shattered three minutes after the restart.

That was when Andy Burgess crossed beautifully from the left and Duffy headed back from the far post for Basham to nod in a simple third goal from four yards out.

The Northwich defenders stood like satues and that goal, more than anything, showed the wde gulf in class.

Smith had brought back Chris Willmott and Barry Quinn after suspension, wth Matt Day the unlucky player to drop out of the Oxford defence.

There was a confidence and swagger about the U's after their best start to a season for 12 years, and Northwich sruggled to cope with their movement and passing, and their closing down of players.

Basham went close early on with a brilliant left-foot volley on the turn from inside the box which keeper Phil Senior pushed over the bar at full stretch.

Oxford broke through on 16 minutes. Burgess played the ball back in from the left, following a freekick, and Duffy controlled it on his chest, turned and hit a left-footed drive past Senior with the help of a slight defelection off Griffiths.

It was Duffy s fourth goal in four games.

Both Burgess and Pettefer were managing to find acres of room in midfield to begin attacks, and the home side used the full width of the Kassam Stadium pitch to good effect.

Billy Turley made a couple of smart saves at the other end, but a second Oxford goal seemed inevitable wth the amount of pressure they were applying, and when it came, right on half-time, it knocked the stuffing out of the visitors.

United were finding so much space all over the pitch it was embarrassing.

Basham had another effort saved, and midway through the second half Johnson made it 4-0 with another very well-worked team goal.

Burgess dummied Eddie Anaclet s low cross from the right with a smple sep-over, and Johnson drove high into the roof of the net from 15 yards.

"We are top of the league" sang the Oxford fans, but they were momentarily silenced as Vics pulled one back 14 minutes from time.

Jonny Allan outpaced Quinn after Anaclet had sloppily given the ball away, and Paul Brayson applied the finishing touch at the far post to his low cross Odubade came off the bench to replace the excellent Duffy, and he added his name to the scoresheet on 82 minutes, finishing off a slick four-man move by running onto Basham s through ball and knocking it past the keeper before slotting in.

It was a very easy win. Smith even had the luxury of being able to take off key men Johnson and Duffy long before the end.