MIKE Williamson is delighted Oxford United have signed “warrior” John Mousinho – even though the new arrival increases competition for his place in the side.

The 31-year-old was the final addition of the transfer window, agreeing a contract on deadline day which will keep him at the club until 2019.

While he and fellow new boy Alex Mowatt were not considered for Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Milton Keynes Dons, they will begin training today in a bid to claim a spot in the squad to face Gillingham at the Kassam Stadium this weekend.

Mousinho’s process of settling in should be helped by a couple of familiar faces.

He is godfather to Scott Shearer’s two daughters, having shared a house with the goalkeeper during a spell at Wycombe Wanderers.

Williamson was in the same Chairboys side nearly a decade ago and is in no doubt Mousinho will benefit the U’s on and off the field.

The former Newcastle United centre back said: “When I heard there was a possibility of him coming I was all for it, because he’s a leader and a winner.

“John’s a warrior physically and has a lot of experience.

“He’s a very good signing and hopefully gets up to speed as quickly as possible.

“He’s a great character and he’s close with Scott Shearer, so they are two larger than life characters.

“It bodes well for the group in general.”

When they were teammates at Adams Park, Mousinho was a central midfielder.

But during a successful spell with Burton Albion, he was converted to a centre back.

It makes him a direct rival for Williamson, who welcomed the added strength and depth, while admitting it would be making him look over his shoulder.

The 33-year-old said: “I think you’d be daft if you didn’t.

“Competition is fantastic and gives everyone an edge.

“It doesn’t matter who you are, you’re only as good as your last game at any level.

“The manager has a good blend now of competition in different areas.”

  • CANICE Carroll captained Ireland’s Under 19 side to victory yesterday.

Oxford United gained permission for the defender to stay in the squad for Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Milton Keynes Dons, flying out afterwards.

He led them to a 2-1 friendly win against the Czech Republic at Waterford.