The revamped Football League Trophy— featuring a group stage and academy sides from Premier League clubs— has, if nothing else, produced something for the history books.
Chelsea’s U21s hosted Oxford United on Tuesday in their final Southern Section Group C fixture. The home side took the lead just before halftime but Oxford equalized deep into stoppage time. The tournament doesn’t allow for extra time so the two sides went straight to penalties.
And the penalty shootout went on. And on. And on. And on.
The shootout lasted for 17 rounds. That’s an astounding 34 penalty kicks taken. Every player who was on the pitch at the full time whistle had to take at least one shot and quite a few had to do it twice. The length of the shootout set an English record, breaking the previous record of 16 rounds. (The longest shootout worldwide is probably this one from the Czech Republic held just last year.)
Chelsea won the shootout 13-12, thanks to their goalkeeper Bradley Collins who both scored and made the winning save.