OXFORD United’s managing director is confident of a five-figure crowd at the Kassam Stadium tomorrow.

The U’s welcome Sheffield Wednesday in their only home game with existing Covid protocols, before the rules are relaxed next week.

Fans must bring a valid NHS Covid pass or negative lateral flow test that has been registered within 48 hours of kick-off, unless exempt.

United MD Niall McWilliams said: “I’m very certain the crowd will be over 10,000.

“We’re becoming increasingly well-supported, we’ve always said this is a club with enormous potential.

“The crowds are getting bigger and that’ll give our players a lift for Saturday.”

It would be the first five-figure crowd at Grenoble Road this season, with the previous best 9,082 against Wycombe Wanderers.

As well as fielding questions on United’s current stadium, McWilliams gave his thoughts on their search for a new home.

A decision on the U’s proposal to lease land at Stratfield Brake, near Kidlington, was this week deferred until a four-week public consultation has taken place.

Oxfordshire County Council’s cabinet went against officers' recommendation to approve the offer, but McWilliams is looking forward to hearing the views of the community.

He said: “As the county council officers said, this is a major decision not just for the football club, it’s a major decision for the community and in particular Kidlington residents.

“It’s not just about football - we’ve always said it’s about community facilities, so those aren’t empty words.

“Therefore, we have to genuinely engage with the Kidlington, Gosford and Water Eaton communities and we’re pleased to have that opportunity.”

The consultation will run from January 25 to February 21 at letstalk.oxfordshire.gov.uk, before going back to cabinet on March 15.

Read also: OxVox chief issues rallying cry before stadium consultation

Council guidelines will dictate how the U’s are able to engage with the community during that time, but McWilliams said the club will make this clear in the coming days.

United’s initial plans for the site include an 18,000-capacity stadium, sports and community grounds and hotel, retail and conference facilities.

McWilliams added: “I’ve said so many times that this county deserves international and world-class facilities.

“I think this is a once in a lifetime chance of achieving those facilities.

“Everyone’s entitled to their opinion, we understand people’s concerns and genuinely feel we can allay them.”

He added: “I think sometimes people underestimate the impact of this football club and I’m not talking about on the pitch, I’m talking about off the pitch.

“We do so many positive things, we bring so much money in terms of the economy and we employ thousands of people.

“It’s really important that the football club stays, we’re passionate about it and we certainly don’t want to lose Oxfordshire’s only professional sports club.

“Those world-class facilities aren’t just about football, they’re about culture and the local and county economy.”