Chris Wilder concedes he might have to take the direct route to try and get Oxford United out of their rut.

The U’s boss has prided his team on their flowing, passing football in his near four-year spell as manager.

But he admits that his players’ worrying lack of confidence means that he might be tempted to ditch that approach in a bid to revive their season.

Saturday’s 2-0 defeat at home to Bradford was United’s fifth straight loss and leaves them 17th in the npower League Two table.

And Wilder knows that it is now a case of leaving no stone unturned as he attempts to breathe new life into his side.

“I may have to change the system,” he admitted.

“When we are at our best, we are a confident side and everyone wants the ball.

“We brought people into the football club who are comfortable in possession and we try to play through teams.

“But we are not playing with any sort of confidence at the moment.

“We don’t like to smash it forwards, but doing that can sometimes take the fear element out of your game, so possibly I am going to have to look to change the tactics through this period.”

Wilder has been severely restricted by a growing casualty list, and that increased last week when Adam Chapman and Jon-Paul Pittman picked up injuries at Cheltenham.

With no midweek game, it gives United a chance to recover.

But it also gives them longer to mull over a hugely disappointing display in front of their home fans before they travel north to face Rotherham.

“It’s going to be a long week,” Wilder admitted.

“The margins of us having 12 points and being in a decent postion in the table, or still on nine points and in not such a great position are so small.

“When one or two players are not having good times it makes it difficult, but if there are three or four, then it’s really tough.

“But we need to come through this spell quickly.”