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Match Preview – Oxford Utd vs Plymouth

Last Updated: 12/10/18 10:32am

Midfielder Shandon Baptiste is available following a one-match ban when Oxford face Plymouth in a crunch contest between two sides at the foot of Sky Bet League One.

Baptiste missed last Saturday’s draw at Southend following his dismissal against Luton for two bookable offences, returning in the midweek Checkatrade Trophy loss to Northampton.

Goalkeeper Simon Eastwood (broken finger), midfielder Samir Carruthers (knee) and midfielder Marcus Browne (knee) all featured against Northampton and could come into contention. Forward Rob Hall (knee) is still out.

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Plymouth have four players available again following injury. Midfielders Antoni Sarcevic (stomach), Jamie Ness (groin) and Conor Grant (calf) all played 90 minutes in Tuesday’s Checkatrade Trophy loss to Swindon following injuries.

Defender Niall Canavan came off the substitutes’ bench in the same game following a groin problem. Argyle are still without striker Ryan Taylor (ankle) and defenders Joe Riley (knee), Gary Sawyer (ankle) and Scott Wootton (thigh).

Highlights of the Sky Bet League One match between Southend and Oxford.

Highlights of the Sky Bet League One match between Southend and Oxford.

Opta stats

Oxford have lost two of their most recent four home league meetings with Plymouth (W1 D1), more than they had in their first 16 combined in the Football League (W9 D6 L1).

Plymouth have won just one of their last seven league meetings with Oxford (D2 L4), although that was their last such clash, 1-0 in February last season.

With just one win In their first twelve games of the season (D3 L8), this is Oxford’s worst start to a Football League season since 2000/01, when they also had just one win after 12 games (D1 L10).

Plymouth earned their first league win of the season last time out and now have seven points in their first twelve games, two more than they had at this stage last season when they just missed out on the play-offs, finishing in seventh place.

Oxford United boss Karl Robinson has lost all three of his previous managerial meetings with Plymouth in League One.

Highlights of the Sky Bet League One match between Plymouth and AFC Wimbledon.

Highlights of the Sky Bet League One match between Plymouth and AFC Wimbledon.

Prutton’s prediction

This is a big, big game at the bottom of League One. Oxford are at the foot of the table and Plymouth are just a point and a place above them, with both already starting to get cut adrift of the sides above them.

Oxford are in a dreadful run of form while Plymouth finally picked up their first win of the season last week. Whether they can repeat last season’s incredible run to almost reach the play-offs remains to be seen, but I fancy them to at least get another win here.

David Prutton predicts: 1-2 (12/1 with Sky Bet)

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