CHRIS Maguire admitted he was surprised to see Oxford United collapse to a 3-0 defeat at Bury after opening the scoring against his former side.

An even game was blown open just after the hour mark, when the Scottish forward slotted home a penalty.

Michael Smith and Jermaine Beckford swiftly added further goals to inflict a third straight defeat on Pep Clotet’s side.

Maguire, who was United’s top-scorer last season, had taken hundreds of penalties against goalkeeper Simon Eastwood on the training ground, which made the spot-kick tough.

He said: “It was one of the most nervous penalties I’ve taken – he knows where I go and I know that.

“After that there only looked like being one winner.

“It obviously affected Oxford a little bit and we got the second and third. I didn’t see that coming.”

Maguire was given a warm reception by the travelling fans, which the 28-year-old appreciated.

United had been interested in re-signing him this summer. He eventually opted for Bury, but insisted he did consider a return.

He said: “Somebody who isn’t interested doesn’t pay for his flight to Birmingham to meet the new manager.

“I always had in the back of my mind I’d like to go back because I had a great year.

“If the contract was right, I would have come back, but to me it just felt a delayed offer, as if I wasn’t needed.”

The game was tight before the penalty decision.

John Mousinho claimed Beckford told him he was surprised referee Ben Toner awarded the spot-kick, but for all United’s hard work before falling behind, the defender expects the side to receive criticism.

He said: “We’ll take it. There’s going to be no bigger critics than all the lads in there.

“Everyone knows we are here to win football games, that’s what we’re paid to do and unfortunately we’ve not done our jobs.

“As professional as we were for 60 minutes, you’ve got to do it for 90.”

U’s boss Pep Clotet felt the first goal was all-important.

He said: “I want to focus on the good first half and how we started the second half.

“I think it was a pity we got the penalty against us, which made the game difficult afterwards.

“It’s always normal that you lose a bit of confidence when you work really hard to be up in the game and have chances.

“When something goes against you it affects the game a lot.”