On the 26th January, BBC Sport reported that Oxford United had accepted the resignation of manager Chris Wilder, with him expected to leave for fellow League Two club Northampton Town. The following day Chris Wilder was unveiled as Northampton's new head coach. After 268 games in charge of Oxford, Wilder's final match as manager was a 1-0 win over Torquay United at the Kassam Stadium, Deane Smalley with the winning goal. Our first match post Chris Wilder era was a 0-0 bore draw at Exeter, led by caretaker manager Mickey Lewis.
Calls for a swift appointment by Oxford fans were well and truly blown away by owner Ian Lenagan, stating in an interview that the process could take up to a month, Mickey Lewis would remain in charge until then. Our first victory under Lewis was a 2-1 home win over AFC Wimbledon, Oxford secured back to back home wins for the first time in a staggering 18 months. Lewis had certainly now put his name firmly in the hat to become permanent manager of the club, with chants of 'Mad Dog's Yellow Army' ringing round the Kassam Stadium.
Oxford started March off badly, losing 3-0 away at Rochdale. Scott Hogan bagging himself a hat-trick, followed by a 2-1 defeat to Burton Albion. Oxford were in free fall and in desperate need of clarity over the manager situation, crys for a new manager rung around the Proact Stadium's away end during a 3-0 loss to Chesterfield. Oxford fans sighed a sigh of relief when on Friday 21st March, hours before a game against Hartlepool, Ian Lenagan confirmed a manager was lined up and set to be revealed the following day. The man to set up and take over was ex Aldershot and Wycombe boss Gary Waddock. Unfortunately his first game in charge was a humiliating 3-0 defeat to Southend, shown live on Sky TV. A lot of work for Waddock still to do it appeared.
Oxford United tumbled out of the play off places for the first time all season after another loss, this time at the hands of Fleetwood Town. However, a week later the Yellows were back in with a shout after a 2-0 win over fellow promotion hopefuls Plymouth Argyle, James Constable scoring a cracker in the process. Where Oxford going to finish in the coveted play off places? No, a defeat to Accrington Stanley ended all chance.
May saw the return of former boss Chris Wilder in the final game of the season. Oxford had the chance to send Northampton down into the Conference in the process. It looked as if it might happen as well, Ryan Williams scoring on 7 minutes. However, Oxford capitulated and Northampton ended up winning 3-1. Oxford finished the 13-14 season in 8th place, just one below the play off positions.
Oxford started to add the their squad ahead of the new season in June, ex Aldershot and Rotherham forward Danny Hylton joining on a free transfer. Rumours of an incoming takeover were also coming to light.
July brought a new era at the club, Darryl Eales replacing Ian Lenagan as owner and Mark Ashton was named the new CEO of the club. It did also see the end of Gary Waddock as Oxford's manager after less than four months in charge, Michael Appleton replaced him as head coach with immediate effect. Waddock is now statistically United's worst ever permanent manager. Oxford continued to make additions in the transfer market Michael Collins, Junior Brown, Joe Riley and Carlton Morris all signed by the new manager.
Oxford simply couldn't have made a worst start to the 2014-2015 season, losing their first four league games and sitting bottom of the Football League on August 23rd. There were things to cheer about in the Capital One Cup though, knocking out League One Bristol City. As well as this as memorable display against top flight West Brom, outplaying the Premier League team before eventually losing on penalties. Oxford did pick up their first point of the season, drawing 3-3 against Dagenham in an exciting encounter.
Oxford appeared to be making progress, picking up respectable points at Southend and Exeter. They then finally won their first game of the campaign, a 3-1 win over Accrington Stanley. Hylton, Collins and Barnett with the goals. However Oxford ended the month in defeat, a dismal display teamed with a poor 2-0 result at Luton.
Oxford fans could barely believe what they were seeing in the away game to Cambridge United on October 11th; one of the worst defensive displays by Oxford in living memory. Cambridge battering United from minute one. Oxford eventually lost the game 5-1, with Cambridge fans going home slightly disappointed they didn't score more. Oxford finished the month off with another defeat, this time to strugglers Carlisle. Oxford losing the game by 2 goals to 1.
Oxford started the month of November with another home defeat, this time to neighbours Wycombe Wanderers. Oxford lost the game 2-1, with Danny Hylton left devastated after missing a last gasp penalty. Oxford continued to impress in cup competitions though, winning 3-1 against Grimsby in the FA Cup. Young prospect James Roberts scoring a brace as Oxford put themselves in the hat for the second round. Oxford secured a big result in the league as well, a 1-0 victory over York City with James Roberts scoring again. The last game of November was a 1-1 draw against Cheltenham Town, Oxford dominating the game but just not being able to the find the winning goal. Young winger Callum O'Dowda missing the biggest chance of the lot to take home all three points.
In traditionally the merriest month of the year, Oxford continued their inconsistent form. They managed an impressive 2-1 home win against promotion chasing Bury, but were then knocked out of the FA Cup by relegation battling Tranmere Rovers. In their final game before Christmas, Oxford drew 1-1 against bottom club Hartlepool United. Danny Hylton grabbing his 13th goal of the season and stays on top the the goalscoring charts in League Two. Merry Christmas everyone!