IF NEW manager Keith Curle was worried about having the game at Oxford on Saturday on his record he needn't have worried - Chester City did him proud.
Curle admitted before the game he couldn't wait to get it out of the way so he could start building for next season but it turned out to be one of City's best performances of the season.
Having had only a week to work with the players, Curle appeared to have made his mark quickly. Although a goalless draw seemed on the cards until Ryan Lowe's added-time winner, at least City looked much better organised than for some time.
Oxford were also under new management, with Brian Talbot appointed only the previous day following the resignation of Argentinian Ramon Diaz, which gave the game a bit more of an edge that would normally have been expected for an end of-season game with nothing at stake.
The result was a keenly-contested affair with some decent football in a spoiling wind but both sides left much to be desired in the finishing department.
There was no shortage of chances and goal-keepers Chris Mackenzie and Chris Tardif had their fair share of work, particularly in the first half, when Lowe and young Robbie Booth proved a handful for the home defenders.
Booth gave a glimpse of his great promise as early as the eighth minute when he ended a move featuring Stewart Drummond and Lowe with a neat turn and shot which was only just off-target.
Missing the target turned out to be the trend for the rest of normal time, although Phil Bolland managed to hit the woodwork in the second-half - at the wrong end!
It would have been an embarrassing way to lose the game had the ball entered his own net but not only did City survive this incident, they were rewarded a couple of minutes into added time when Lowe showed great composure after beating one defender before firing into the Oxford net to spark celebrations among the 374 City fans.
Lowe's celebrations continued after the final whistle, when he threw most of his kit into the crowd.