Oxford United will get two tough tests at the Kassam Stadium in pre-season after West Ham United and Cardiff City agreed to send their full first-team squads.

The U’s will play only two home games as they warm up before the start of the 2012/13 campaign.

Chris Wilder’s men start with the highlight of their summer schedule, against Sam Allardyce’s West Ham side, who have just secured promotion back into the top flight.

Rob Green, Carlton Cole and former Oxfordshire Schools’ player Matt Taylor could all turn out for the Premier League outfit on July 17.

The match could also see the return to the Kassam Stadium of striker Rob Hall, who enjoyed two spells on loan at United last sea-son.

Cardiff City, who visited Oxford at the start of their run to the Carling Cup final, have also promised to send their top players on August 4.

The games come either side of United’s three-game tour to the United States and chairman Kelvin Thomas is pleased with the programme.

He said: “I think it’s a decent pre-season schedule.

“What’s really good about it is both the teams who are coming to us are committed to bringing their first-team squads – they definitely won’t be XIs.”

Thomas, who is a West Ham supporter, is particularly looking forward to taking on the Hammers in front of what should be a good attendance at the Kassam.

“It’s pre-season, so it will be fun,” he said.

“West Ham did fantastically well to get promoted. They’re a big club and talking to (co-owner) David Sullivan at Wembley, he said they would expect to bring quite a few supporters for the game.”

The U’s will also make trips to Didcot Town, Eastleigh and Oxford City, finishing on Friday, August 10.

Due to the Olympics, the competitive games begin later than usual, beginning with a Carling Cup first- round tie in the week commencing August 13.

The npower League Two season kicks-off on Saturday, August 18.


Tuesday, July 17: West Ham United (H).

Friday, July 20: Didcot Town (A).

Tuesday, July 24: Seacoast United Mariners (USA tour).

Friday, July 27: Seacoast United Phantoms (USA tour).

Monday, July 30: Jim Dedeus XI (USA tour).

Saturday, August 4: Cardiff City (H).

Tuesday, August 7: Eastleigh (A).

Friday, August 10: Oxford City (A).