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Oxford have not been afraid of spending big over the years, though the majority of their big signings came during their time in Division One in the 1980/90s. Dean Windass’s £630k move from Aberdeen in 1998-99 was the Us record signing until almost 20 years later when English midfielder Marvin Johnson was brought in for a new £684k record fee from Scottish Premiership side Motherwell.
In the summer of 2016, Johnson arrived on the deadline day of the transfer window. Johnson made 52 appearances for Oxford in all competitions during his first season, and he featured in the Football League Trophy final at Wembley which Oxford lost 2-1 to Coventry City. The following season he caught the eye of many top clubs including Middlesbrough who offered Johnson a three-year contract for almost £2.43m.
David Bardsley famously joined the Us from Watford all the way back in 1987-88, and his £300k transfer fee still stands as the clubs third highest in history, ahead of Kane Hemmings £270k move from Dundee in 2016-17.
The Us most recent signing who arrived for big money was young English midfielder Cameron Brannagan who was recruited from Liverpool’s youth academy in January of 2018. Brannagan arrived for £200k and has already proven his worth, having made over 80 appearances and winning the Players’ Player of the Year Award in just his second season at the club.
There is only one footballer who was sold for more than Marvin Johnson’s price tag – Kemar Roofe. Roofe originally joined Oxford United on loan from West Brom during the 2014-15, and he had an impact straight away, scoring 6 goals in just 16 appearances. Ahead of the following season, the young English striker joined the Us on a permanent deal for an undisclosed fee.
During his first full season for the Us, Roofe scored an impressive 26 goals in 49 games and was also named in the League Two PFA Team of The Year which put him in the spotlight of many top clubs. In the summer of 2016, Roofe signed for Championship side Leeds United for a club-record fee of £3.15m.
One of the most famous Oxford United transfers in history was the arrival and sale of Republic of Ireland legend John Aldridge. The Irish striker arrived from Newport County in 1984 for just £81k, and he went on to become an Oxford legend by scoring an incredible 72 goals in 114 games.
After three years playing for the Us, Aldridge attracted many top tier clubs including giants Liverpool who purchased the in-demand man for a massive £720k record fee at the time. You do not want to miss out on more Oxford United transfer rumours.