OXFORD United’s display in their dress rehearsal gave boss Karl Robinson encouragement his side are ready for opening night of the play-offs.

The squad was split in two for a game at the Kassam Stadium yesterday afternoon.

After two friendly matches against external opposition, it was the start of their final preparations for the Sky Bet League One semi-final first leg against Portsmouth on Friday.

United plan to train at the stadium again this week as Robinson looks to fine-tune their game plan.

But overall the head coach was pleased with what he had seen.

He said: “We’ve still got five days to really tighten it up, but as a whole I thought it was a really good exercise.

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“They looked committed, no one shirked a tackle, so it was as close as you’re going to get.

“There’s obviously elements of playing in an empty stadium which are different for us.

“I still think there’s more to come and it’s our job to get that out.

“You can see how serious we are here.

“We’ve got three more big days working on our shape and then it’s a case of looking forward to the challenge.

“We’ve just got a little bit more work to do behind closed doors and to carry out one or two little things we think we need to do to home in on that.”

It is the start of a huge few days for the club – in a week’s time they could be just 90 minutes away from becoming a Championship outfit.

The unique circumstances which have taken the campaign into July and behind closed doors mean all four sides contesting the play-offs are heading into the unknown.

Also read: Behind the scenes at Oxford United's dress rehearsal

Robinson would have loved to be preparing his side to play in front of two sold-out grounds, but is confident they will be as close to 100 per cent as possible.

He said: “We’re ready and I’m sure Portsmouth are.

“Walking round in the last few days I think our city is ready for this as well.

“We’re hopefully going to do something which was a distant dream for all of us and that’s been a constant message to the play-offs.

“We’re just sad we can’t have people in stadiums to watch their team play.

“We’ve got to make sure we do something for them so when they come back to watch us we’re in a different league.

“Hopefully we can continue to work hard for the rest of the week and see where that takes us.”