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Oxford midfielder Rose determined to shoot down home town club Bristol Rovers
Danny Rose admits Oxford United’s home clash with Bristol Rovers this afternoon will have an extra edge as he attempts to shoot down his home town club.
The midfielder was born and raised in Bristol and has been inundated with ticket requests from family and friends.
Those factors, plus a proposed move to the Pirates which collapsed in 2007, all add spice to the occasion for Rose, who is looking to help beat the struggling visitors and keep United top of Sky Bet League Two.
“I had a period on trial with Rovers, but things went a bit sour and the deal didn't happen.
“I always want to play against them because they are my home team.
“I did support them growing up. My grandad was a big fan and he took me to my first game, which was a Bristol Rovers game at Wembley.
“It gives me more impetus.
“Obviously they need a result to kickstart their season, but hopefully we can delay that.”
The Us are on a four-game unbeaten run and manager Chris Wilder is boosted by the expected return of three key players.
Dave Kitson is available after suspension, while Alfie Potter and Johnny Mullins are in line for recalls after shaking off hamstring and ankle problems.
The hosts are without Tom Newey, though, who is serving a one-game ban.
With Jon Meades also injured the U’s do not have a specialist left back available, but Mullins’s return would allow United to play three at the back, which they did in the 2-0 win against Northampton Town last month.
Wilder said: “We have two or three options..
“We will miss Tom. He’s been a really good performer for us, but I’m not going to make excuses.
“We will pick a side and expect to win. The opposition have got far more problems with the amount of players they can’t pick.”
Rovers have not won since August, a run of ten games in all competitions, but did hold Chesterfield to a goalless draw at home a week ago.
Boss John Ward is without the banned David Clarkson and there are doubts over Matt Harrold (groin) and Lee Brown (hamstring).
Mark McChrystal (tendonitis) is out, but striker Chris Beardsley could make his debut after signing from Preston on loan.
Today's squads Oxford Utd: from Clarke, Mullins, Raynes, Wright, Hunt, Whing, Rose, Rigg, Potter, Constable, Kitson, Smalley, Williams, Marsh, O'Dowda, Ruffels, Davies, Bevans, Crocombe.
Bristol Rov: from Mildenhall, Smith, Packwood, Parkes, Lockyer, Clucas, Clarke, O'Toole, Santos, Brunt, Richards, Beardsley, Gough, Geary, Southway, Norburn, Henshall, Harrison, Harding, Harrold, Brown.
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