DES Buckingham says Oxford United will be closely monitoring a former defender from set pieces this afternoon.

Chey Dunkley, who played 96 games for the U’s, and was a regular in the 2015/16 side which won promotion to the third tier, has scored four times for Shrewsbury Town this season.

Greg Leigh and Ciaron Brown are United’s highest scoring defenders this campaign, with six and five goals respectively.

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On Dunkley, U’s head coach Buckingham said: “He’s one that we will keep an eye on. We’ll pay them the respect that they deserve and set up rightly so because of that, but it’s about making sure we can go and try and implement our game plan.

“They’re going to be fighting for points for a different reason than what we are, and we saw at Port Vale that regardless of where you are in the league, everyone makes it very difficult.

“We need to make sure we approach this the same way we did for Port Vale. It’s now about going and performing, and coming away with both a performance and a result.”

The Shrews reappointed Paul Hurst as head coach at the end of January, following a run of seven defeats in eight which saw Oxford-born Matt Taylor sacked.

Buckingham said: “There are elements to their game that they’ve changed, and changed quite significantly.

“They’ve had a similar break to what we have, and that gives you time to work on those things.

“We’ve got what we feel is a good understanding of what to expect, and we’ve worked on that. We’re as best prepared as we can be, but we’re expecting a very tough game.”