JOHN Mousinho has a decision to make about his future after being told he is likely to be a fringe player at Oxford United next season.

The skipper was an influential figure last term, with his move into midfield in the autumn a key reason behind an upturn in form.

An appearance-related clause in Mousinho’s contract was activated, triggering a 12-month extension.

But boss Karl Robinson sees the 33-year-old’s role as a changed one in the next campaign, to involve more coaching, and has given him the close season to consider the plan.

He said: “Mous knows he won’t figure that much next year. We don’t foresee that being the case.

“He will probably want to fight for his place, but right now I’ve told him where he is and he will have a decision to make during the summer.

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“I was very honest with him and he was very honest with me.

“We’ve spoken to him about doing more coaching and being alongside us.

“It’s his career, it’s his family he’s got to support and he will come back and give us the answer which is best for him.”

Mousinho signed from Burton Albion on deadline day in August 2017.

His first season was at centre half, but enjoyed more success reprising a midfield role from earlier in his career to help dig the U’s out of relegation trouble under Robinson.

Ahmed Kashi was signed in January to help share the burden, but ended up having a prolonged run in the side.

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Mousinho started just one of the final ten games as Robinson looked to try out other options.

At the time he said: “I want to play every week and be involved. I’m never happy not playing and that’s healthy.

“If you have players at any stage of their career that are happy sitting on the bench then you’ve got the wrong sort of players.”

The former Brentford apprentice has spoken about a long-held ambition of going into coaching after hanging up his boots, having completed the UEFA A Licence course several years ago.

And Robinson believes he remains a valuable asset to the club.

He said: “I’d love one day to work with him in a different way.

“He’s a deep thinker and cares for Oxford United – I think the fans saw that last year with the penalty he took (against Rochdale) under immense pressure.

“He’s a great captain and a great man to have around the place.”