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Oxford United
League One | Gameweek 29
Jan 22, 2022 at 3pm UK
Kassam Stadium
Sheffield Wednesday logo

Oxford Utd
3 - 2
Sheff Weds

Taylor (45+1', 62'), Winnall (84')
Taylor (45+4')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Bannan (7'), Windass (60')
Hunt (14'), Bannan (80')

Preview: Oxford United vs. Sheffield Wednesday - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's League One clash between Oxford United and Sheffield Wednesday, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

A crucial clash in the race for spots in the top six of the League One table will take place at the Kassam Stadium on Saturday, as Oxford United host Sheffield Wednesday.

Back-to-back defeats have seen the hosts drop out of the playoffs in recent weeks, while the Owls boosted their own bid with a victory over Plymouth Argyle on Saturday.

Match preview

Oxford United's manager Karl Robinson pictured with Cameron Brannagan on March 2, 2021© Reuters

After losing in the playoffs last season, Oxford United kicked off the new campaign in impressive form as they targeted promotion to the second tier this time around, with Karl Robinson's men establishing themselves in the top six with 42 points from the opening 23 games.

However, they have struggled to build on that strong first half in recent weeks, firstly having to escape from a home clash with a struggling Cheltenham Town side with a 1-1 draw thanks to Mark Sykes's 82nd-minute equaliser.

The U's have since suffered back-to-back 2-0 defeats heading into Saturday, firstly falling to Lincoln City as Anthony Scully and Morgan Whittaker sent them home empty-handed before Curtis Thompson and Brandon Hanlan condemned them to a loss at the hands of high-flying Wycombe Wanderers.

As a result of their dip in form, Robinson's men have now dropped out of the playoff places, currently occupying seventh spot albeit with the chance to jump back into the top six if they better Plymouth Argyle's result when the Pilgrims take on Lincoln.

Sheffield Wednesday manager Darren Moore pictured on March 6, 2021© Reuters

They welcome a Sheffield Wednesday side who now sit just three points worse off with a game in hand.

Following their relegation from the Championship last season under Darren Moore, the Owls have struggled to establish long runs of consistency, but they remain well in the hunt for the playoff places nonetheless.

After consecutive defeats to Sunderland and Shrewsbury Town, the first of which being a 5-0 thrashing, the Yorkshire outfit went two weeks without a game, but they returned in style at the weekend against sixth-placed Plymouth Argyle.

Sylla Sow and Nathaniel Mendez-Laing gave the Owls a two-goal lead at the break, and, while Adam Randell pulled a goal back for the hosts early in the second half, Sam Hutchinson and Josh Windass ensured they came out with a 4-2 victory - a Marvin Johnson own goal being the only other blemish on an impressive home win.

By picking up a crucial win and simultaneously harming a rival, Moore's men hugely boosted their playoff hopes, and they have the chance to do the same again on Saturday against a side who sit just three points ahead with the top six also just three points away.

Oxford United League One form:
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • L

Sheffield Wednesday League One form:
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W

Sheffield Wednesday form (all competitions):
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • W

Team News

Sheffield Wednesday's Callum Paterson celebrates scoring their second goal on September 28, 2021© Reuters

Oxford United will be boosted by the return of midfielder Herbie Kane, who served a suspension last time out after he was sent off in the 2-0 defeat to Lincoln City.

That was one of just a few changes Robinson made for the Wycombe game, and he should again trust his core squad despite the dip in form, with Cameron Brannagan and Mark Sykes expected to feature in the central trio with the returning Kane.

The line will be led by Matty Taylor, who has registered 12 goals and five assists in 26 appearances across League One and FA Cup action so far this season.

While Sheffield Wednesday are without several centre-backs, with Dominic Iorfa, Chey Dunkley and Lewis Gibson all sidelined, they did welcome Jordan Storey into the squad this week after his loan arrival from Preston North End, and the 24-year-old could come straight in to help the makeshift back line.

Midfield star and captain Barry Bannan was forced off last time out, but he is expected to be fit to start in the centre with the returning Massimo Luongo, while Nathaniel Mendez-Laing boosted his claim for another start on the left flank with a goal.

Sylla Sow was afforded a rare start in that game, and, after finding the net in the first half, he could again be deployed, although the Dutch attacker faces competition from the likes of Lee Gregory, Callum Paterson, Saido Berahino and Josh Windass.

Oxford United possible starting lineup:
Eastwood; Long, Moore, McNally, Seddon; Brannagan, Kane, Sykes; Williams, Taylor, Whyte

Sheffield Wednesday possible starting lineup:
Peacock-Farrell; Palmer, Storey, Hutchinson; Hunt, Adeniran, Bannan, Luongo, Mendez-Laing; Windass, Paterson

SM words green background

We say: Oxford United 1-2 Sheffield Wednesday

Sheffield Wednesday looked rejuvenated in their clash with Plymouth, and, on the back of that confidence-building win, we see them taking all three points from an Oxford side struggling for form.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 2.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 2.5:data

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Data Analysis

Our analysis of all available data, including recent performances and player stats up until an hour before kickoff, suggested the most likely outcome of this match was a Oxford United win with a probability of 49.14%. A win for Sheffield Wednesday had a probability of 25.46% and a draw had a probability of 25.4%.

The most likely scoreline for a Oxford United win was 1-0 with a probability of 11.57%. The next most likely scorelines for that outcome were 2-1 (9.38%) and 2-0 (8.99%). The likeliest Sheffield Wednesday win was 0-1 (7.77%), while for a drawn scoreline it was 1-1 (12.07%). The actual scoreline of 3-2 was predicted with a 2.5% likelihood. Our data analysis correctly predicted that Oxford United would win this match.

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Game History

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Group A

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