MICHAEL Appleton does not think Oxford United supporters will be surprised by the decisions made over which out-of-contract players are offered the chance to stay on.

There are nine professionals whose futures are up in the air this summer, all of whom are due to hold individual meetings with Appleton over the next 48 hours.

Of those, six were named in the squad for the 3-0 win over Wycombe Wanderers which secured automatic promotion to Sky Bet League One.

Head coach Appleton is beginning to work out what is required to compete at the higher level, but thinks the outcomes of the meetings will be fairly predictable.

“There won’t be that many surprises,” he said.

“We’ve got a good group and I’ll have a better understanding from Darryl (Eales, chairman) shortly about where we’re going to be at from a budgetary point of view.

“That will make my mind up on various things.”

Many supporters will be most keen to hear about Danny Hylton, who has scored 30 goals in two seasons at United.

After helping the side win promotion, the forward would jump at the chance to stay.

He said: “I know there are so many more good times to come here with the staff, chairman and the players.

“This club is only going in one direction and I would love to be part of it, but it is out of my hands and we will see what happens.”

Johnny Mullins, who started 50 games this season and captained the side when Jake Wright was out injured, is another regular who will be hoping for good news.

In the same boat are forwards Jordan Bowery and Chris Maguire, who signed short-term deals in January before going on to score important goals in the promotion push.

One of the main decisions will be over goalkeeper Benji Buchel.

The Liechtenstein international dislodged Sam Slocombe as United’s No 1 during the season, but with the 26-year-old lacking experience at the higher level it could be a position the club feel needs strengthening.

Striker Patrick Hoban, who is on loan at Grimsby Town, looks set to leave after six goals in a season and a half.

First-year professionals Freddie Grant and AJ George appear to have been told their 12-month extensions will not be taken up, with the pair posting farewell messages on social media last week.


Jordan Bowery

Benji Buchel

AJ George*

Freddie Grant*

Patrick Hoban*

Danny Hylton

Chris Maguire

Johnny Mullins

Josh Ruffels*

* club have extension option