Oxford hope Rix will do the trick for promotion

The former Chelsea coach Graham Rix begins his short-term brief as Oxford United manager with a crunch match against the Third Division leaders Doncaster Rovers today, insisting he will do "whatever it takes" to clinch promotion.

The former Chelsea coach Graham Rix begins his short-term brief as Oxford United manager with a crunch match against the Third Division leaders Doncaster Rovers today, insisting he will do "whatever it takes" to clinch promotion.

The Oxford chairman Firoz Kassam hired Rix this week after suspending the manager Ian Atkins, who Bristol Rovers say will be their manager next season. Atkins built his success around fairly rigid, direct tactics, whereas Rix has a reputation for favouring a passing game.

But the former Arsenal and England midfielder said he would ask his new charges to employ whatever tactics that were appropriate.

"I want us to get promoted, that's all," Rix said. "If we have to do that by kicking it 80 yards, we'll do it by kicking it 80 yards. If we do it by playing football, we'll do it by playing football. I'm looking forward to the challenge and the response from the players has been good. This is a massive game to start with."

Rix takes over an Oxford side that have slipped from their perch, having led the table at the turn of the year, but who still have sound prospects for a play-off place. After suffering only one defeat in their opening 26 games - at Doncaster, at it happens - the U's have been beaten five times in their last 11, but Rix said: "Oxford have been towards the top of the table all season and have a great chance of going up."

Bristol City, who travel to Port Vale, have turned back the clock in the hope of recharging their challenge for direct promotion from the Second Division, re-signing last season's top scorer, Scott Murray, only eight months after selling him to Reading for £650,000.

Danny Wilson's side appeared to be mounting a serious threat to Plymouth Argyle and Queen's Park Rangers when they won 11 consecutive matches, but have since won only once in six.

The leaders Plymouth, who take on Wrexham at Home Park attempting to consolidate a seven-point lead, have been urged by one-time assistant manager Kevin Blackwell, now head coach at Leeds, to move for his old Leeds boss Peter Reid to fill their vacant manager's job.

News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
Arts and Entertainment
Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones
tvSeries 5, Episode 3 review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence