MARCUS McGuane is relishing the prospect of performing in front of the Oxford United fans after signing a three-year deal.

The midfielder yesterday completed his move from Nottingham Forest for an undisclosed fee, having impressed on loan in the first half of the campaign.

McGuane already has his eyes on 2021/22, although he is unlikely to return to fitness until pre-season as he continues to recover from a thigh injury sustained in United’s 2-0 win over Bristol Rovers on January 23.

With social distancing restrictions set to be lifted on June 21, United are planning for 50 per cent capacity crowds when the new campaign starts in August.

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Having played in front of 2,000 fans during the brief easing of rules last December, the return of supporters is an extra source of motivation for McGuane.

“I’ve only had a few games when there was a small amount of fans, but I can imagine when it’s full what the stadium and atmosphere will be like,” the 22-year-old said.

“They just bring out that extra bit in you that you didn’t know you had.

“As much as you love football, you perform for the fans.

“The club means everything to them and I want to do well for them and get the club where they want to be.”

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McGuane made 21 appearances in his first spell with the U’s and became an influential force in the weeks leading up to his injury.

The former Arsenal and Barcelona man helped United climb away from the Sky Bet League One relegation zone and has been keeping a close eye on their play-off challenge.

He said: “I can’t watch the games because I get so nervous.

“Playing in them is fine, but watching it is just different.

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“I’m always refreshing the scores, so I’m like a fan when I’m watching.

“I always give the boys a message to support them.”

Head coach Karl Robinson was delighted to seal the deal, having mentioned on several occasions United’s lack of power in midfield without McGuane.

He said: “Marcus is a significant signing for us.

“He is young, he has unbelievable ability and he was really dominating games just before the injury.

“We thank the board for investing once again in a young, hungry player who we know has so much more to show us.

“He is just one part of the squad for next season and that is starting to take shape already.”