LIAM Manning says he is still in the market for a centre forward, even after the addition of former Cardiff City player Mark Harris.

The signing of Harris leaves Oxford United boss Manning with three recognised strikers, including both Sam Baldock and Gatlin O’Donkor.

Manning though admitted up front remains an area he wants to add to, when asked by this newspaper.

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Discussing the acquisition of Harris, Manning said: “He’s been moved around, he’s played wide and nine, which I think especially with Mark and speaking to him, sometimes when he’s managed right, it can work and other times, it can become counterproductive where you don’t pick up any rhythm in a position.

“It does change when you go from wide to nine.

“What he brings to us is someone that’s going to run in behind really well – his movement is excellent and he’s quick.

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“He’s someone that is going to set the press exactly how we want.

“One thing that hit me straight away when we had the meeting was he spoke how he enjoys the defensive side of the game, which when you’ve got an attacking player talking like that, is music to your ears as a manager.

“I was delighted that he spoke about that and predominately I think he’ll be a nine, but at the same point, if he goes wide, I can see that happening at some point in the future.

“We’ve brought him in to be a nine and it’s still an area where we will look to add as well.”

Manning added: “He had a lot of interest from Championship clubs so I’m really pleased to get him in.”

Asked about the similarities between Harris and former loanee Kyle Joseph, who joined Sky Bet League One rivals Blackpool on a permanent deal last week, Manning responded: “There are similarities, I don’t want a direct comparison, they are their own player in their own right.

“There are certain bits you can compare in terms of attitude, will to work and will to run, but Mark’s his own player in his own right.”

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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.