Darren Patterson took stick last week from some fans for his substitutions – but it was his changes which turned the match in midweek and took United through to the second round of the FA Cup.

Phil Trainer and Yemi Odubade came off the bench and got the extra-time goals which gave the U’s an exciting 3-1 replay victory at Dorchester after they had trailed and looked like heading out of the competition.

“ Substitutions are all about opinion,” Patterson said.

“If your substitutions are absolutely perfect and you make the right decision every week, there would still be somebody in the crowd having a go at you.

“We try different things for the right reasons. It’s nice if they work, they don’t always come off, but they’re for the right reasons . . . to help us score goals, help the team get back in the game or to steady the ship.

“Supporters pay good money to come and watch us, so they’re justified in having a pop if they want to.

“When I gave my reasons for the subs at Grays some thought I was having a go at the fans – I would never do that, I’ve got far too much respect for them for that.

The crowd figure at Dorchester was not released on the night.

It was 1,474, which included 264 Oxford fans on the away terrace, and a few dozen in the seats, who could only be incorporated in the total gate.

“It’s nice for our magnificent away support to go away happy,” Patterson said after Tuesday night’s dramatic finish.