CRAIG Short was full of praise for Matty Taylor after the striker starred against Burton Albion.

The No 9 set Oxford United on their way to a 3-1 triumph after just 48 seconds, punishing Frazer Blake-Tracy’s error to open the scoring.

Taylor was a constant menace throughout the Sky Bet League One clash and won a late penalty that James Henry converted to seal victory.

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The 31-year-old has found the net five times this season, but Short feels he brings much more than goals.

United’s assistant manager, standing in for Karl Robinson, said: “He’s got his goal, but he’s done all the other things I keep talking about - being a nuisance, being a threat and getting in behind and challenging.

“Before I came here, I thought Matty Taylor was bigger. He plays like he’s bigger.

“I find it a bit easier coaching centre forwards, because it’s what I didn’t like in the game (as a former centre back).

“He’s primarily a goalscorer, but he was a complete centre forward today.”

Short was equally impressed with United’s midfield three of Henry, Herbie Kane and Cameron Brannagan, while he called captain Elliott Moore a ‘colossus’ on his 100th game for the club.

Ultimately, there were no poor performances as the U’s saw off a play-off rival to end the day in the top six.

Short was thrilled to claim his second win in Karl Robinson’s absence, with United’s head coach isolating until next Thursday after testing positive for coronavirus.

He said: “I couldn’t ask for anymore.

“You’re always nervous when you’re taking charge of things and want to make sure things are right for Karl when he comes back in.

“There’s more responsibility for me, the staff and the players and they responded really well.

“This wasn’t against a team that was struggling, they’re not the same team we played in January and Jimmy (Floyd Hasselbaink)’s done a really good job.”