KARL Robinson feels more could be done to attract fans to Papa John’s Trophy matches.

The Oxford United head coach is set to name a strong side for tonight’s Group H (Southern) visit of Stevenage, where supporters have been able to take advantage of several ticket-related offers.

Crowds in the competition are traditionally low, with the 1,548 who watched the U’s draw 2-2 with Portsmouth in October 2019 the club’s highest home attendance since Robinson took charge in March 2018.

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It could create a scenario where there were more United fans at Hillsborough for Saturday’s win over Sheffield Wednesday than at the Kassam Stadium tonight.

Robinson said: “We hope that’s not the case, we’d like to get as many people there as possible.

“I can’t see why we can’t go out to schools and give 5,000 tickets out.

“If I was promoting this game, I’d be giving away so many tickets to get people in the stadium to see their Oxford United.

“Maybe free tickets don’t work in the short term, but in the medium and the long term it increases the possibility that these people come back.

“I would be kicking-off at 7 to make sure kids get in.

“This should be a chance to give as many tickets out as possible to get people in the building.”

Season-ticket holders can attend tonight’s game for free, but only if they claimed their seat before last Thursday’s deadline.

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Title sponsor Papa John’s also ran a ‘2-4-1’ offer to the first 60 supporters who bought a ticket by phone or in-person.

Those who attend will see a much more experienced line-up than the one that lost 4-1 at Cambridge United in the Group H opener.

Gavin Whyte and Marcus McGuane are missing after testing positive for coronavirus, while Herbie Kane is absent with a hamstring knock.

Alex Gorrin has flown home to see family in Spain and Luke McNally is suspended, with Sam Winnall not expected to feature, and teenagers Gatlin O’Donkor and Josh Johnson have been added to the squad.

But Robinson suggested several players who played at Hillsborough will be involved.

He said: “We’ll be strong, it’ll be a first team.

“The Jamos (James Henry), Cams (Cameron Brannagan) of this world will play.

“The back four will need to build continuity, because we’ve had a lot of injuries in that area.

“I’d like to get over 2,000 in there - it won’t half help.”