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League One

Preview: League One Play-Off Final

Oxford United and Wycombe Wanderers are potentially 90 minutes from glory

13 July 2020

Oxford United and Wycombe Wanderers are within touching distance of Championship football - but who will come out on top when the sides meet in the Sky Bet League One Play-Off Final on Monday 13 July?

It all comes down to this.

Separated geographically by just 25 miles, by a single point in the final League One standings and a single goal in their only previous meeting this season, there's little to choose between these two, but only one will be celebrating promotion come Monday evening.

Wycombe booked their place at Wembley Stadium in style. Four first-leg goals in their Semi-Final at Fleetwood Town, coupled with two red cards for the hosts, ultimately did the damage, and Gareth Ainsworth's men secured their berth with a 2-2 draw in Monday's return leg. 

It capped what has been a remarkable season for the Chairboys who, before the season had started, were tipped for relegation. Now, potentially just 90 minutes stand between them and promotion to the Championship for the first time in their 133-year history.

Looking to put an end to Wycombe's journey will be Oxford, whose route to the Final was somewhat more nerve-wracking. The U's overcame Portsmouth after extra-time and penalties at the Kassam Stadium, scoring all five of their efforts from the spot to ensure they'll be competing under the arch.

As one of the highest-scoring teams in League One, and indeed the country this season, Karl Robinson's men have regularly taken on the role of entertainers, and will be hoping it's time to party like it's 1999 - the last time they were in the second tier. 

Oxford ran out 1-0 winners when Wycombe made the short journey down the M40 during the regular season, in a game which featured eight yellow cards, as well as one red.

All the signs point to another match-up to remember, and live updates from the Final will be available on Twitter, via @SkyBetLeagueOne. Kick-off is at 7:30pm.

Opta stats:

  • Oxford are unbeaten in their last five encounters with Wycombe in all competitions (W4 D1), conceding just one goal across these matches, winning each of the last three.
  • Oxford have tasted defeat on their last two trips to Wembley, losing in the EFL Trophy Final 3-2 to Barnsley in 2016 and 2-1 to Coventry in 2017. However, in 2010 they won the Conference Play-Off Final against York City to reach the Football League.
  • Wycombe have won three of their four trips to Wembley, although they lost 7-6 in a penalty shootout versus Southend in the League Two Play-Off Final back in 2015 on their last visit.
  • During the regular League One season, Oxford made 258 sequences of 10+ passes from open play; 22 more than any other side in the division. In contrast, Wycombe made just 12 – the fewest of any side.
  • Wycombe are the 11th side to finish in 3rd place to reach the Play-Off Final in the last 14 League One campaigns, with five of those sides going onto promotion, including Charlton last season.
  • Oxford United scored 61 goals during the regular League One season; only Peterborough scored more in the division in 2019-20 (68).
  • Wycombe scored 24 goals from set-pieces situations in the 2019/20 League One campaign; only Rotherham (30) scored more during the regular season.
  • Oxford’s James Henry has been directly involved in 24 goals in all competitions this season (14 goals, 10 assists); the most goal involvements in a single campaign in his career.
  • Both Darius Charles and Adebayo Akinfenwa featured in a Play-Off final at Wembley as recently as 2016, helping AFC Wimbledon win promotion to League One with a 2-0 victory over Plymouth, Akinfenwa sealing the win with a penalty late on.

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