Karl Robinson closing in on managerial milestones for Oxford United

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Karl Robinson is closing in on the same number of Oxford United games as Chris Wilder and Jim Smith
Karl Robinson is closing in on the same number of Oxford United games as Chris Wilder and Jim Smith

KARL Robinson is set to climb above some notable names in Oxford United’s managerial history next season.

The U’s head coach has been linked with Queens Park Rangers and Hibernian in recent weeks, but there is no indication he will move.

Instead, Robinson is set to start what would be his fifth full season with United in July – and he is closing in on some of the club’s most successful managers.

READ MORE: Where you said Oxford United most need to strengthen this summer

The 41-year-old has taken charge of 232 games since arriving at the Kassam Stadium in March 2018, the eighth-highest in U’s history.

It means one more full Football League campaign would see him move to fourth in the table, passing Denis Smith, Jim Smith, Chris Wilder and Brian Horton – who boast four United promotions between them.

It would put Robinson behind only Arthur Turner and Harry Thompson, United’s first two managers, and Gerry Summers, who was boss for six years in the early 1970s.

The top two are comfortably out in front, taking charge of 504 and 473 games respectively.

Thompson became manager of Headington United, as they were then known, in 1949 – the year the club joined the Southern League and turned professional.

He stayed until 1958, winning the Southern League and Cup double in 1953, retaining the latter the following year – when he also took the U’s to the FA Cup fourth round.

Thompson was eventually replaced by Arthur Turner, who took United into the Football League in 1962.

The former Stoke City player won back-to-back Southern Leagues and guided the U’s to the second tier, winning the Third Division in 1968.

Summers managed 297 United games, so Robinson is already not a million miles away.

The ex-Sheffield United player kept the U’s in Division Two, achieving a then club record finish of eighth in 1972/73.

Robinson could also potentially join an exclusive group of five managers to achieve a century of competitive wins at United.

The U’s boss is on 98, so two more victories would see him join Turner, Thompson, Denis and Jim Smith and Wilder in the 100 club.

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