WITH Oxford United’s players in Bournemouth for pre-season, one player who has caught the eye so far is Luke McNally.

Twenty-one-year-old McNally has yet to make his U’s debut since joining in January from League of Ireland Premier Division side St Patrick’s Athletic on a three and a half year deal, for an undisclosed fee.

He only joined full training for the U’s in March, having not played since November when the Irish league season was curtailed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The departure of Rob Atkinson to Bristol City earlier this month means the centre back is well placed to break into the side.

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Sam Long said he has been impressed by McNallys physical attributes, describing him as ‘an absolute machine’.

“Because he’s played men’s football, he’s comfortable in the environment,” said Long.

“On the pitch, he’s an absolute machine.

“He’s so fast, he’s big, he’s strong and if he keeps on improving like he has done since he arrived, there’s no reason why he can’t do what Rob’s done.

“He’s so fast, it’s scary for the size he is.

“It’s a good string to his bow and hopefully he can do well in pre-season and impress.

“He’s got a good attitude and he’ll listen to you, he’ll take information on board.”