Oxford United manager Chris Wilder ready to cull squad

Chris Wilder

Oxford United manager Chris Wilder will this week begin the process of trimming his squad ahead of the new season.

Wilder was handed a new contract last week and will hold meetings with players on Thursday to tell them whether they have a future at the club.

The U's, who finished ninth in League Two, have 16 players out of contract in the summer and Wilder admitted he had some tough decisions ahead of him.

"It's a difficult week," Wilder told BBC Radio Oxford.

Wilder said some players are borderline cases, adding: "I'll do it face to face.

"I won't do it by text or through the press. I won't do it any other way than respecting the players and sitting down in front of them and saying 'Yes you are here next year'.

"I would hope the majority of them would want to stay because of the way the club is run. The ones that don't want to stay I will respect and wish them all the best."

With the U's targeting the play-offs next term and placing much emphasis on recruitment this summer following an injury-plagued season, Wilder admits it is important to get things right.

"We know we have to sort the recruitment out," he said.

"It's been a fantastic week for me personally. I appreciate the people that have spoken to me, it's good to know that they still want me here at the football club and most importantly the chairman still wants me here and that is good enough for me.

"Now we have to look forward. I have made decisions and I have an idea of what we need and what we need to do.

"You have to get those calls spot-on. There was a lot of talk about recruitment and getting that right.

"Personally I would have been intrigued to see how close we would have got to the play-offs had I had a fully fit squad and I am 100% certain we would have gone very close. We have to get it right in the summer."