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'A big inspiration' - Brannagan wants Oxford to emulate Ipswich after promotion

Cameron Brannagan labelled Ipswich Town's back-to-back promotions as 'an inspiration'. <i>(Image: PA)</i>
Cameron Brannagan labelled Ipswich Town's back-to-back promotions as 'an inspiration'. (Image: PA)

Oxford United midfielder Cameron Brannagan believes his side should look to emulate Ipswich Town after sealing promotion from League One to the Championship.

The U's beat Bolton Wanderers 2-0 at Wembley to return to the second tier after 25 years away, having played in non-league as recently as 2010

Josh Murphy's brace was enough to get Des Buckingham's side over the line, meaning that ex-Town duo Greg Leigh and Kyle Edwards have secured consecutive promotions from the third tier.

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That's because the Blues finished second in League One last season, following it up by securing another promotion this campaign to earn a place in the Premier League.

Brannagan believes that they've set the perfect example for Oxford to follow next season, as Kieran McKenna's men have shown it's possible to thrive in a higher division without boasting a huge budget.

“Look at Ipswich," the 28-year-old said via the Oxford Mail. "They’re a big inspiration in my eyes.

East Anglian Daily Times: Oxford United won the League One play-offs to secure promotion to the Championship
East Anglian Daily Times: Oxford United won the League One play-offs to secure promotion to the Championship

Oxford United won the League One play-offs to secure promotion to the Championship (Image: PA)

"The way they handled the promotion and went into the Championship, and they’re now a Premiership team.

“If that’s not an inspiration to believe in yourself, and that you can go and do great things. I can’t wait.”

Brannagan, who came through Liverpool's academy system, has been linked with numerous moves away from the Kassam Stadium, with Blackpool reportedly triggering his release clause two years ago. However, he's always remained loyal to Oxford, signing a new three-year deal in July 2022.

He praised the club for supporting him after picking up a rare infection that almost left him blind, promising that he'd make it up to them by helping them return to the Championship.

“I can’t explain this feeling, I’ve never felt like this in my football career," he admitted after the win against Bolton. "That moment at full-time means so much to me and the club, players, staff and fans. That was a special moment.

“Just before Exeter, that was the moment where I was like ‘we are going to go up’. I saw it in my dream.

“This moment, I can’t really put into words how I’m feeling.

“I’ve been here for a long time, and that was always my aim from day dot, so to say that now I am a Championship player, and these boys are, it hasn’t sunk in yet, but these are moments that I’ll cherish forever.”