MORE than 30 players pulled on the Oxford United jersey during the 2023/24 season, each playing their own role in the club’s historic promotion.

United beat Bolton Wanderers 2-0 in the Sky Bet League One play-off final, ensuring a return to the second tier of English football for the first time in 25 years.

We looked back at all 31 players who represented the U’s in league action in our end of season player ratings. This time, it’s the turn of the midfielders.

READ AGAIN: How did we rate U’s keepers and defenders during historic promotion season?

Cameron Brannagan

Thoroughly deserved the supporters’ player of the year award after a vintage season, with 13 league goals and 10 assists.

Started the season with Marcus McGuane alongside him, but then took on the role of a single six in the aftermath of the 5-0 defeat at Bolton in March.

Took to that position with ease, showing his discipline, passing range, and ability to manipulate games.

Rating: 9.5/10

Oxford Mail: Cameron Brannagan celebrates his penalty against StevenageCameron Brannagan celebrates his penalty against Stevenage (Image: Mike Allen)

Alex Gorrin

Signed on a short-term deal in October, and would go on to make two substitute appearances in the league before heading to Forest Green Rovers in January.

After a couple of years blighted by injury, it will have meant the world to be back out playing for United, a club close to his heart.

Rating: 4/10

James Henry

No league starts, with all 14 of his appearances coming from the bench, in what proved to be his final campaign with the club.

He oozed class during most of his cameos, and scored twice, including a late equaliser at home to Portsmouth in January.

Rating: 6/10

Oxford Mail: James Henry celebrates his late equaliser against PortsmouthJames Henry celebrates his late equaliser against Portsmouth (Image: Mike Allen)

Jay Matete

Arrived on loan from Sunderland on January deadline day with the hope he would tick the holding midfielder box that fans had been crying out for in recent years.

However, a knee injury cut short his spell with the U’s after just six games, three of which were as a substitute.

Rating: 4.5/10

Josh McEachran

Ten starts and a further 16 appearances from the bench represent a bit of a mixed bag for the deep-lying playmaker.

He played well at the beginning of the season, and was exceptional at the end, but had a lull in the middle.

The Chelsea academy graduate returned to his hometown side in the summer with promotion the aim. And he achieved just that.

Rating: 6.5/10

Marcus McGuane

Easily one of United’s best players during the opening couple of months, as he used his skillset and raw attributes to bully opposition midfields.

Form then, he waned a little bit, before he found himself briefly out of the squad entirely after the Bolton hammering.

He remained a true professional though, and having had a 12-month option in his contract triggered, he’ll surely have something of a point to prove next season.

Rating: 7.5/10

Oxford Mail: Marcus McGuane drives forward for Oxford UnitedMarcus McGuane drives forward for Oxford United (Image: Mike Allen)

Ruben Rodrigues

Missed just two league games, one of which was due to his red card at Cheltenham Town in November.

A healthy return of nine goals and five assists marked a promising first campaign in the Football League.

He’ll once again have to step up next season, but he’s certainly got the attributes to do so.

Rating: 8/10

Oisin Smyth

In and out of the squad, yet despite playing in just 10 league matches, only two of which were starts, he never looked troubled, even when playing at centre half or right back.

His late wonder strike at Charlton Athletic on New Year’s Day earned him the club’s goal of the season award, and showed exactly what he’s capable of.

Has been linked with a move to St Mirren this summer, and at 24, he needs regular game time.

Rating: 6/10