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Raynes wants another clean sheet
Michael Raynes is targetting another clean sheet tomorrow as Oxford United attempt to build on last weekend’s win by beating York City.
The U’s ended a five-game winless run with a 1-0 success at Plymouth Argyle.
It was their first clean sheet in nine matches and while much of the focus during the poor run has been on the lack of a cutting edge, the defence has been an issue this season.
The U’s have actually scored one more goal in this campaign compared to the same stage last season, but they have conceded an extra ten.
Raynes, who is competing with a fit-again Michael Duberry for a place in the back four tomorrow, knows how important it is to tighten up the defence for the rest of the season.
He said: “It’s vital, we’ve conceded a lot more goals than we wanted to at the start of the season.
“If we’re being honest, I think we’ve conceded a lot more than our performances have deserved.
“It’s hard to take and sometimes you need the centre forwards to bail you out and sometimes they need you to bail them out.
“We’ll just keep trying to do the right things.”
Tomorrow’s game provides a good chance to make it two victories in a row, with York at the bottom of the npower League Two form table after eight games without a win.
It is followed by successive games against the division’s top three.
Raynes is looking forward to facing the title hopefuls, but stressed United would not be taking their eye off the ball.
He said: “We’ve got a very tough run coming up and those are the games you want to play in, but we’ve got York first.
“We look at every game as one we should win with the squad we’ve got and this game is no different.
“Those games (against the top sides) are the ones you look forward to, but it doesn’t mean anything if we don’t get this weekend right first.”