Wolves under-21s’ EFL Trophy fixtures confirmed

Wolves under-21s’ Group G fixtures against Blackpool, Carlisle United and Morecambe in the 2019/20 EFL Trophy – now known as the Leasing.com Trophy – have been confirmed.

Rob Edwards’ side, who missed out on a spot in the knockout stages last season, are one of 16 invited Academy teams to join the 48 clubs in League One and League Two who will make up the competition this year.

As an Academy side, Wolves will play all their matches in this season’s competition away from home, with the first group match taking place on Tuesday 24th September at Carlisle’s Brunton Park, 7.45pm.

The under-21s will then head to Globe Arena to face Morecambe a week later on Tuesday 1st October, before finishing their group stage matches away at Bloomfield Road to take on League One Blackpool on Tuesday 5th November – both of these ties are also due to kick-off at 7.45pm.

Following the fixture release, Edwards said: “It’s a brilliant competition – they were three of the most enjoyable games for us last season.

“It will be great to go back to Blackpool, one of my former clubs, so that will be nice from a personal point of view, but we’re also really looking forward to going to Carlisle and Morecambe, although they’ll be three tough games.

“Fortunately, we haven’t had any of them scheduled in the international break, which we had last season, because we don’t want to be losing any of our players as we want to go as strong as we possibly can into those games.

“It’s a competition that we really enjoy, one that we competed well in last year and we’d like to try and do the same this season. We know they’re going to be difficult games, but we’re looking forwards to it.”

Ticket information for the 2019/20 Leasing.com Trophy will be confirmed in due course. For a full list of under-23 fixtures for the 2019/20 season, click here.

Leasing.com Trophy factfile:

Group stages

  • 16 groups of four teams
  • Each group to contain one invited team
  • Groups formed to minimise overall travel for EFL clubs and fans
  • Invited under-21 teams to play all group games away
  • Clubs will be awarded three points for a win, one point for a draw
  • In the event of a drawn game after 90 minutes, a penalty shootout will be held with the victorious team gaining an extra point
  • Top two clubs qualify from each group

Knockout rounds

  • Round two will remain regionalised with group winners at home against a second placed team from a different qualifying group
  • Round three will remain regionalised
  • Quarter-finals will be drawn without geographical restriction (no regionalisation)
  • If scores are level after 90 minutes, all knockout rounds will be decided by penalties except for the final, which will have extra-time and then penalties

Player criteria

  • Six of the 11 players in the starting line-up need to be under-21 at 30th June this year
  • There can be no more than two players who are over 21 and have made more than 40 appearances for the first team (either in the starting 11 or as a playing substitute) as of 30th June
  • Players who are out on loan are ineligible for this competition
  • Top two clubs qualify from each group
  • It is not possible to appear for more than one club in the tournament, so the cup-tied rule applies.

Wolves’ competition history

  • 1985/86: Group stages
  • 1986/87: Round one
  • 1987/88: Winners
  • 1988/89: Southern Area final
  • 2013/14: Round two
  • 2016/17 (under-21s): Round three
  • 2018/19 (under-21s): Group stages

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