Oxford boss Chris Wilder says out-of-favour striker Jon-Paul Pittman could still have a role to play this season.
Pittman, 25, has spent the last three months on loan at Crawley having featured only six times for the U's after his summer move.
"He's contracted to the football club, so he is part of the squad. If he wants to stop here then I'll be more than happy," Wilder told BBC Radio Oxford.
"It's up to him but he can be a big player for us."
The U's boss continued: "We made a decision that he needed to go out and get games, unfortunately that didn't happen at Crawley. Now he has to go out and show his qualities on the field that made us sign him in the first place."
The U's are currently in eighth place in League Two, two points off the play-offs.