Yemi Odubade issued a gentle "don't forget me" message to boss Darren Patterson as he bagged a lightning-quick winner in Oxford United's fourth pre-season victory in five matches against lower opposition.

United's top scorer last season, Odubade took just 76 seconds to mark his first start up front by finding the net in the 1-0 win at Blue Square South side Bath City.

With new signings James Constable and Jamie Guy looking more of a goal threat, Odubade may find his chances more likely to come out wide.

But there was no denying his ability when he put the U's ahead from Adam Murray's pass. He turned sharply and then slipped a low shot under keeper Paul Evans for a simple finish.

Odubade went close again with another sharp turn on the half hour, when he planted his left-footed shot just past the far post.

And in the second half, he showed the other side of his game by fluffing a golden opportunity when he burst clear, and with Sam Deering unmarked to his left, fluffed his shot, allowing the keeper to block.

Both Odubade and Craig Reid were getting their first starts up front, and triallist Reid, from Cheltenham Town, held the ball up well and on one occasion showed silky skill to easily outwit a City defender on the bye-line.

The U's might have won much more comfortably, as they carved out three breakaway one-on-ones near the end.

But maybe this narrow win will be better for them, not encouraging players, or fans, to get too carried away.

Patterson said afterwards: "The front two both did well. Yemi's been terrific, his attitude first class. We've still got to work on his movement up front, and he's got to realise what his assets are and play to them "I was just a bit disappointed with his reaction when he came off, shaking his head the way he did."

Patterson added: "It was a good work-out for us. This was the final time that I chop and change the team like that but we gave some players game time.

"There were many positives, the only negatives being our passing in the second half and our discipline in giving away needless free-kicks."

James Clarke produced a fine saving tackle in the first half when ex-U's striker Stuart Douglas burst through for Bath.

The home side had one of those players who is a headline-writer's dream in Mark Badman, and he lived up to his name with a cynical challenge on Murray, which earned him a lecture from the unimpressed ref.

Wayne Corden showed good ability on the ball and some tidy passing, but it remains to be seen whether he's done enough to convince Patterson to offer him a deal.

Late sub Constable almost added a second with a burst of speed and shot which def- lected off the keeper's leg.

And Lewis Haldane was unable to find the net when the visitors had players virtually queueing up to score on a swift break near the finish.

But Bath might also have grabbed an equaliser, Clarke heading off the line from Jamie Gosling after Ben Hinchliffe made a good block from Douglas.

It was a ueful test for the U's. But much sterner ones lie ahead.

Oxford Utd: Hinchcliffe, Clarke, Foster (Quinn h-t), Willmott, Day, Corden, Murray (Davies h-t), Burnell (Storer h-t), Deering (Haldane 70), Odubade (Constable 65), Reid (Guy 65).