Stoke City News

Stoke To Go The Distance In This Year’s EFL Trophy

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The draw for the 2018/19 EFL Trophy took place on Wednesday afternoon and Stoke City’s Under 23 side have been named in Group A of the Northern section of the competition and we now know our opposition at the group stage of the tournament.

Stoke were, of course, one of the 16 invited Category 1 clubs from the Premier League and the Championship who take their place in the competition for the coming campaign.

The draw was conducted by former competition winners Paul Heckingbottom and Gregor Robertson and just like last season the tournament has been physically arranged so that clubs and fans face minimal travelling times to games – the invited Category 1 clubs will also play all of their group games away from home.

Stoke have been drawn in alongside Carlisle United, Morecambe and Sunderland and we certainly face some lengthy trips as we look to put ourselves through to the next round.

Rule changes for the competition this season as the EFL attempt to further quell fan concerns and protests from those at League One and Two level include invited clubs now being able to only field two players over the age of 21 that have made more than 40 senior appearances in their career and League One and Two clubs can now call on players who are out on loan at National League level clubs.

Teams who met each other at the Group Stage last season, and were again drawn together this year, the home club from 2017/18 will play away in 2018/19.

Southampton have been prevented from facing Portsmouth, as have Newcastle and Sunderland.

Dates for the ties will be announced in due course.

Northern Section

Group A:
Carlisle United
Stoke City U23

Group B:
Fleetwood Town
Leicester City U23

Group C:
Accrington Stanley
Macclesfield Town
West Bromwich Albion U23

Group D:
Crewe Alexandra
Shrewsbury Town
Tranmere Rovers
Manchester City U23

Group E:
Burton Albion
Port Vale
Middlesbrough U23

Group F:
Bradford City
Oldham Athletic
Everton U23

Group G:
Doncaster Rovers
Grimsby Town
Notts County
Newcastle United U23

Group H:
Lincoln City
Mansfield Town
Scunthorpe United
Wolves U23

Southern Section

Group A:
Crawley Town
Tottenham Hotspur U23

Group B:
Cambridge United
Colchester United
Southend United
Southampton U23

Group C:
Newport County
Plymouth Argyle
Swindon Town
Chelsea U23

Group D:
Bristol Rovers
Exeter City
Yeovil Town
West Ham U23

Group E:
Cheltenham Town
Coventry City
Forest Green Rovers
Arsenal U23

Group F:
Northampton Town
Oxford United
Wycombe Wanderers
Fulham U23

Group G:
AFC Wimbledon
Charlton Athletic
Swansea City U23

Group H:
Luton Town
MK Dons
Peterborough United
Brighton U23

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