FIVE players joined Oxford United on loan during the 2022/23 season and between them made more than 100 appearances for the club.

Lewis Bate and Kyle Joseph arrived during the summer transfer window from Leeds United and Swansea City respectively, while Nottingham Forest forward Ateef Konate joined Hull City duo Brandon Fleming and Tyler Smith in January.

Here, we take a look at their temporary spells with United and see whether they were a success or a failure.

READ ALSO: How did loanees fare during temporary moves away from the U’s?


The central midfielder was the first loanee to join the club, back in early August.

He arrived having joined Leeds for a seven-figure fee from Chelsea the previous summer.

Neat and tidy on the ball from the beginning, Bate’s influence in the team picked up during the last couple of months in 2022, before carrying that on into the new year as he formed a solid combination in the middle of the park with Cameron Brannagan and Marcus McGuane.

He scored his only goal in 35 appearances when he struck from outside the box to earn the U’s a 1-1 draw at MK Dons.

While he was clever in possession and had a good range of passing, a lack of end product will surely be a sticking point for the 20-year-old.

A broken bone in his hand cut short his loan spell in March.

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Swansea forward Joseph followed Bate through the door and made very arguably the greatest impact of United’s loanees this season.

The 21-year-old played across the front line and bagged 10 goals in 41 games.

That total could well have been higher had he not suffered a two-month spell on the sidelines with an ankle injury, following a challenge on him during the 1-1 draw at Shrewsbury Town on November 9.

Joseph was a regular pick under both Karl Robinson and Liam Manning, and played a key role as the U’s preserved their Sky Bet League One status at the end of the season, by scoring in the wins against Cheltenham Town and Forest Green Rovers.

Whether Championship side Swansea will send him out on loan again next season remains to be seen, but Manning has already made it clear how much he enjoyed working with the former Wigan Athletic player.


The first of the January loan signings, Fleming impressed without truly nailing down a regular spot.

The longest spell he had in the starting line-up was four games in February, for which Ciaron Brown moved into the centre of defence.

That was the biggest problem for Fleming, in that Brown – a double-winner at United’s end of season awards – was the first choice left back.

Fleming though showed plenty of drive and energy in his 15 appearances, whether in a back four or playing as a wing-back.


French attacker Konate arrived with plenty of promise having earned rave reviews while playing for Forest’s Under-21 side.

However, that ability failed to materialise while with the U’s as he was limited to five appearances, two of which were starts.

He became a forgotten man once Robinson was sacked, failing to make another matchday squad and his loan was cut short before the end of the season.


The 24-year-old striker arrived on deadline day, seemingly to take the load off Matty Taylor up front, however he himself made a late deadline day exit to Port Vale.

Smith joined United having bagged three goals in the Championship for Hull earlier in the season and a generally decent goals record elsewhere at other clubs.

He started in just two of his seven appearances though, without registering a goal, and missed a big chance on his debut at home to Barnsley, when he attempted to loop the ball over the goalkeeper but only found the gloves of Brad Collins.

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About the author

To sign up to Liam’s latest Oxford United newsletter for free, click here:

Formerly the politics reporter for the Oxford Mail, Liam now covers all things Oxford United.

Liam attends the U’s home and away, as well as covering other big sports stories across the county.

His Oxford United newsletter is released every Saturday morning at 6am.