KARL Robinson is considering switching Oxford United’s shape in the short-term until they sign a winger to add some stardust to the side.

A high-class wide man on the left flank remains a top priority for the U’s, who have scored four goals in four games this season.

They tweaked the line-up against Watford on Tuesday night, flipping the midfield around to have two deeper-lying players instead of one.

In theory it gives United, who are yet to keep a clean sheet, more security defensively in Alex Gorrin’s absence.

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There is also the question of how the side look in the final third, having struggled to convert chances so far.

Robinson said: “Our team is based on playing well, but when you need that moment of magic we don’t seem to have that. It’s the big thing for me.

“We’ve signed Matty and Sam Winnall, they’re goalscorers who need to play with wide players to ask the question, or you have to change shape.

“We’re not too averse to looking at new systems, especially with where we sit right now with the lack of players in certain positions.

“We won’t change our philosophy, but it doesn’t mean you can’t change your system, so that’s something we’ll look at.”

Despite being knocked out of the Carabao Cup on penalties in midweek, there was plenty in the performance against Watford to encourage.

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The difficult tests keep coming, with Sunderland visiting the Kassam Stadium tomorrow, in a meeting of two sides fancied to challenge for promotion.

“I think any time Sunderland are in League One, most teams would look at them as being the benchmark,” Robinson said.

“This year it’s take your pick – Sunderland, Charlton, Ipswich, Hull.

“Everyone talks about us in the same breath as them.

“It shows how far we’ve come that we are spoken about like what we’d class as the powerhouses in our league.

“They’re a good team, a good club and we have to make sure we turn up on Saturday and perform.”

Having gone almost two decades without meeting the Black Cats, this will be the sixth clash in just over two years.

A quartet of 1-1s and a 1-0 win for Sunderland on their last visit in February tells its own story about how tight the games have been.

One common theme has been an electric atmosphere, which will be lacking tomorrow with the game being played behind closed doors.

“They’ve been great games,” Robinson said.

“The one that stands out was the one two seasons ago when we scored that late goal and the roof coming off.

“Not having fans in the stadium maybe makes it not as intense as it once was.

“People play a big role in those tense games and keep you on your toes.

“We’ve got to find that edge.”