DARRYL Eales believes the ongoing task of finding a new manager is less difficult now than when Pep Clotet was appointed last summer.

The Oxford United chairman expects the process to stretch into a fifth week, with a decision unlikely to be made until after the Plymouth Argyle game next weekend.

But with Eales placing his confidence in caretaker manager Derek Fazackerley to handle the fixture list, there is less time pressure than after Michael Appleton left last June in the middle of the transfer window.

“It’s an inexact science,” Eales said.

“You’re trying to find someone who you believe buys into Oxford United, the community club philosophy and the playing philosophy based around young, talented players as well as someone who is a highly-capable coach with all the right attributes.

“Anyone who thinks it’s easy should try it.

“At the end of the day, the good news is it’s not like the summer when you’re in the middle of a window and you’ve got to almost make a decision sooner than you’d want to.”