SUMMER is a time of change in football, but in one sense Oxford United are flying the flag for longevity.

The U’s are the only club in both top tens for the longest-serving managers and players in the English Football League (EFL).

Head coach Karl Robinson is sixth in the list of bosses, while right back Sam Long boasts the joint sixth-longest spell with one club.

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No other club features in both top tens, although Cambridge United come close. Mark Bonner is the 11th longest-serving manager, while Harrison Dunk and Greg Taylor make the players’ list.

Robinson has been in the role for more than four years, having joined the U’s in March 2018.

It puts the 41-year-old behind only Simon Weaver (Harrogate Town), Gareth Ainsworth (Wycombe Wanderers), John Coleman (Accrington Stanley), Paul Warne (Rotherham United) and Mark Robins (Coventry City).

The United boss led his side to the Sky Bet League One play-offs in successive seasons before last term’s eighth-placed finish.

Robinson has been linked with several other clubs during his time at the Kassam Stadium, most recently Sky Bet Championship outfit Queens Park Rangers – at one point leading the betting for the Loftus Road role.

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Long is seventh in the EFL’s players’ list, which begins counting on July 1 of their maiden season in the first-team squad.

That puts the defender's U’s spell at eight years, 11 months and 14 days, beginning from the start of the 2013/14 campaign.

In fact, the Bicester-born right back had already made his debut by that point, first appearing in a 3-0 win at Accrington Stanley in April 2013.

The 27-year-old joined the club aged eight and is approaching two decades with United.

Long has featured regularly under Robinson, with 141 of his 167 U’s appearances coming under the head coach.


  • Simon Weaver (Harrogate Town) – May 2009
  • Gareth Ainsworth (Wycombe Wanderers) – September 2012
  • John Coleman (Accrington Stanley) – September 2014
  • Paul Warne (Rotherham United) – November 2016
  • Mark Robins (Coventry City) – March 2017
  • Karl Robinson (Oxford United) – March 2018
  • Matt Taylor (Exeter City) – June 2018
  • Matt Gray (Sutton United) – May 2019
  • Gary Rowett (Millwall) – October 2019
  • Michael O’Neill (Stoke City) – November 2019


  • Dean Lewington (MK Dons) – 19 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Liam Palmer (Sheffield Wednesday) – 11 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Joe Ralls (Cardiff City) – 10 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Harrison Dunk (Cambridge United) – 10 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Tom Eastman (Colchester United) – 10 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Greg Taylor (Cambridge United) – 8 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Sam Long (Oxford United) – 8 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Craig Forsyth (Derby County) – 8 years, 11 months, 14 days
  • Jonathan Hogg (Huddersfield Town) – 8 years, 10 months, 16 days
  • Joe Wildsmith (Sheffield Wednesday) – 8 years, 6 months, 18 days

Information from