CAMERON Brannagan is desperate to put his Wembley heartache behind him and go one better with Oxford United next season.

The highly-rated midfielder signed a two-year contract extension yesterday, keeping him at the club until 2023.

Read also: Cameron Brannagan signs new Oxford United deal

Brannagan has become increasingly influential since joining in January 2018 and has now made 104 appearances for the U’s – the most recent coming in last month’s 2-1 Sky Bet League One play-off final defeat to Wycombe Wanderers.

Brannagan was visibly emotional when the full-time whistle went at Wembley and is using the experience as motivation for 2020/21.

He said: “Last season we played some great stuff and we were very unfortunate not to go all the way, but that’s life and we move on.

“It definitely lit the fire in my stomach – it killed me when we lost at Wembley.

“I don’t want to feel that ever again.

“They say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and I can’t wait to start pre-season.”

United will be relieved to tie down the 24-year-old, who had 12 months left on his existing deal and was the subject of interest from clubs higher up the pyramid.

Despite an interrupted campaign, Brannagan made 39 appearances for United in 2019/20.

The ex-Liverpool trainee netted all of his seven goals for the season by mid-October, before picking up a knee injury in the 3-0 win over Rochdale.

It kept him out for seven weeks, but Brannagan recovered to remain an ever-present as the U’s forced themselves into play-off contention in February and March, before the coronavirus pandemic struck.

He started both semi-finals – scoring the winning penalty in the shoot-out victory over Portsmouth to send United to Wembley – and the final.