NATHAN Holland says the way he responded to being dropped is showing in his performances.

The 23-year-old winger was left out of Oxford United’s squad for the 1-1 draw with Gillingham on September 25 after a tough opening two months of the season.

But Holland returned to score twice against Accrington Stanley three days later, sparking a much more consistent run of form.

He said: “I’ve always been a strong believer that everything happens for a reason.

“It is what it is, it never felt like I was left out and I just came in and kept believing in myself.

“I’ve definitely bounced back stronger.”

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The West Ham United loanee has featured in all five Sky Bet League One matches since the Gillingham draw, starting four, and scored his fourth goal of the campaign against Burton Albion on Saturday.

Holland has made 16 appearances and is already just one game from equalling his best total for a senior season, set in 2019/20 when he was first at United.

The forward’s injury record means the U's are managing his minutes carefully, but he insists there is much more to come.

Holland added: “I just want to stay injury-free and keep enjoying my football.

“I perform best when I’m enjoying myself and given licence to do what I do best, which is get at people.

“That’s what I’ve got here, so hopefully I can keep contributing to goals and assists.”