In-form winger eyes more goals in step up to Championship

Josh Murphy, Oxford United's Wembley hero, aims to shine in the Championship next season after securing promotion with a brilliant brace. Despite his contract nearing its end, Murphy is keen to stay and help the team succeed under manager Des Buckingham.

Neil Goulding
Neil Goulding

Last Updated: 2024-05-21

Louis Hobbs

5 minutes read

Josh Murphy of Oxford United celebrates promotion to the Sky Bet Championship after the team's victory in the Sky Bet League One Play

Wembley hero Josh Murphy can’t wait to prove himself with Oxford United in the Championship next season. The winger bagged a brilliant brace to secure the U’s a deserved place in the second tier for the first time in 25 years.

A spirited 2-0 victory over promotion favourites Bolton Wanderers in this year’s League One play-off final at Wembley guaranteed a memorable promotion. The former Norwich City prospect Murphy, who scored ten goals this season, is hungry to bang in the goals next term as the club look to prove they’re not one-hit wonders in the second tier.

"For me and the club, it’s just a dream," reflected Murphy. "It’s just great to help get the club back where it belongs."

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Even if it had been someone else getting the goals, it’s just great to get the club promoted

Josh Murphy

Murphy ready to commit for the long term

Murphy played a season for Cardiff City in the Premier League and also had a taste of top flight football with the Canaries, his first professional club. However the former England Under-20 international’s contract expires this summer and there are likely to be plenty of suitors for his signature, but the experienced winger is loving life at Oxford – and ready to commit to the club with a new deal.

"I’d love to be in these colours next year," Murphy told "I’m happy and settled at this club. I’m still enjoying it.

"I’m buzzing for the gaffer (Des Buckingham), its been an up and down time since he’s been here. But I think he’s a brilliant coach and a brilliant manager, he got what he deserves. I’m just happy for him and the boys."

"I’ve got every faith we can do well in the Championship next season. We play a good brand of football and this is an exciting group of players."

Image Credits: Michael Steele/Getty Images

Image Credits: Michael Steele/Getty Images

Manager Buckingham wary of losing talented winger

Boss Buckingham was understandably delighted with his side’s incredible season – and is also chomping at the bit to see how and he and his players embrace the challenge of the Championship.

"This club means so much to so many people, to get us back into the Championship is a dream come true," beamed Buckingham, and special praise was saved for match-winner Murphy, a key player in the U’s impressive promotion charge this term.

"It was wonderful to see Josh get his two goals," added Buckingham. "He has been a delight to work with since I walked through the door."

Murphy’s current contract might be up soon, but Buckingham would love to keep one of his star players. "I hope so," stressed Buckingham. "I said that to him when we were up lifting the trophy. We will do as much as we possibly can to keep Josh. We want good people at this club. He is a very good footballer and fits our style of football.”

"If we can keep him and he wants to stay, we will do everything we can and it won’t be for the lack of trying."

Neil Goulding
Neil GouldingSenior Sports Reporter

Neil has been a journalist for longer than he'd care to remember, having written for national newspapers and respected publications for over 25 years. For the last three years he has worked freelance for BBC Sport, working on the production desk as a sub-editor and also as a writer, covering a whole range of sports.