PEP Clotet believes Mike Williamson’s experience would make him an asset for Oxford United.

The centre back, who lives locally, travelled with the squad to Portugal after joining in training last Friday.

Williamson, 33, is a free agent after being released by Wolverhampton Wanderers at the end of last season.

And while it is understood there is no deal on the table at this stage, Clotet is interested – if the former Newcastle United defender settles in well this week.

The United manager said: “We are trying to get his fitness up to speed and see the feeling he has about it.

“We are happy because it’s very positive for the lads to bring his good experience.

“It is a boost to everyone for that reason.

“I have the thinking he would be a fantastic player for us, because he has shown it all his career.

“He has a very good personality and can help in improving the mentality of our squad.

“You never know, let’s see in the next few days.”

Clotet was more cautious about the prospects of other new faces joining the squad this week.

The new boss has been happy to allow the club’s recruitment team to continue with the work started earlier this summer when Michael Appleton was at the club.

Mark Thomas, U’s head of recruitment, is at the camp in Portugal, but Clotet’s priority is on those within the camp.

He said: “At this time I’m very focused on the players we have at the minute.

“I know the club is working hard to analyse the options we might need.

“But I’m delighted in this moment with what I’m seeing and I hope whoever we bring in can add a little bit more, but it’s still early.

“My (only) concern is whoever comes into the club is the right one and can help the group. That’s the only thing I have in mind.”

Following a whirlwind first week after taking over at United, the trip to the Algarve could not have been better timed for Clotet.

He said: “It’s a big bonus, because here you’re not only training with them and you’re starting to know them earlier.

“You get to know how they interact with each other and how they are as a group, because here they have to live with each other.”