Oxford United

Oxford United transfer archive – from fourth tier to Serie B for Davies

Stepping up in divisions is nothing new in football, many players have trodden that particular path before and many more will continue to do so. often players such as Dele Alli and Kemar Roofe have their talent and potential spotted very quickly and bigger sides jump in.

In a way, that approach by the bigger sides is like catching fish with dynamite. You light the fuse, throw it in the water and ‘boom’ the fish float to the top. It’s not new; it’s not rocket science but by Jove it is effective. It’s also the same for the way that higher-tier clubs cherry-pick from lower-league sides.

Trouble is, not all transfers turn out the way that the buying team intends them to do. Take the case of Craig Davies for instnace and his move from fourth-tier Oxford United to Serie A wannabes Hellas Verona. That particular move came about at the start of the January 2006 transfer window and just 18 months after the U’s signed him on a free transfer from Manchester City’s Under-18s.

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Then 20-year-old Davies flew to Serie B side Verona and signed a five-year deal. His Italian Dream lasted just six months and saw Davies make just one 31-minute appearance in a 3-2 loss to Brescia. Aside from that half-hour of football, Davies made the bench just once more against Triestina and watched his new side suffer a 2-0 loss.

Homesickness saw him move from Verona back to English football with Wolves on a nine-month loan deal before the Italian side cut their losses and sold him to Oldham Athletic for £90,000. That move back to England saw Davies bounce around football pinball-like playing for a further NINE clubs including current club Mansfield Town whom he joined after his second spell at Oldham.

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