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Team of the Round: A selection of stand-out performers in Round One

12 August 2016

The 2016/17 EFL Cup got under way this week, and Round One delivered plenty of thrills and spills as it so often does.

Narrowing down our Team of the Round to just 11 players and a manger was no mean feat but, with a little help from fans on social media, we've made our selection. And here it is...

Goalkeeper: Simon Eastwood (Oxford United)

Eastwood drew praise from all corners for his performance, including Birmingham City boss Gary Rowett.

Defender: Ben Tilney (Milton Keynes Dons)

It was a debut to remember for full-back Tilney, who starred for a youthful MK Dons team against Newport County in Round One.

The 19-year-old played his part in a stirring comeback, scoring a stunning equaliser as the Dons turned around a 2-0 deficit to advance.

Defender: Fraser Franks (Stevenage)

An away trip to Sky Bet Championship side Ipswich Town proved no problem for Stevenage, and Franks was an immovable object at the back for Sky Bet League Two Boro.

Starting at left-back and finishing in the centre of defence, the 25-year-old embodied the League Two side's fighting spirit as they picked up a shock 1-0 win at Portman Road.

Defender: Ethan Ampadu (Exeter City)

The story of the round was without a doubt that of Ampadu, who became Exeter's youngest ever player aged 15 years, 10 months and 26 days.

Handed the chance to play as it was the school holidays, the defender grabbed it with both hands – being named Man of the Match as the Grecians knocked out Sky Bet Championship outfit Brentford.

Midfielder: Piero Mingoia (Cambridge United)

Sheffield Wednesday had one of the runs of the tournament last year, but it wasn't to be this time around as Cambridge fought back to claim an excellent 2-1 win.

The Owls looked certain to go through, but then Mingoia intervened with a spectacular stoppage-time strike, and Luke Berry did the damage in the additional period to send the U's through.

Midfielder: Matty Dolan (Yeovil Town)

If you haven't seen this man's goal that helped see off Walsall in Round One, then where have you been?!

Dolan's wonder strike from his own half capped off a fine midfield display for the Glovers as the Sky Bet League Two side sealed a place in the next round.

Midfielder: Pelly Ruddock (Luton Town)

Luton went top of the Sky Bet League Two table with an opening-day win, and the week got even better as they starred in front of the Sky Sports cameras on Wednesday night.

Pelly Ruddock was the driving force as the Hatters recorded a memorable 3-1 win over Aston Villa, earning him the Man of the Match award.

Midfielder: Jamie Murphy (Brighton & Hove Albion)

Brighton were in no mood for messing about on Tuesday night, avoiding a Round One upset by cruising past Colchester United.

Murphy demonstrated his finishing prowess at the Amex, hitting with a brace for the Seagulls in the 4-0 triumph.

Forward: Jack Dunn (Morecambe)

The first of three substitutes to make our Team of the Round strike force!

On in the 63rd minute, Morecambe's Dunn hit two goals in normal time – including a stoppage-time penalty – to take the Shrimps' tie with Rotherham to extra-time. And the Liverpool loanee grabbed what proved to be the winner, claiming the matchball in the epic 5-4 win.

Forward: Tom Nichols (Peterborough United)

Next up, Nichols of Peterborough, who came on to score two goals and send Posh past fellow Sky Bet League One side AFC Wimbledon.

Trailing until his arrival just before the hour, the 22-year-old soon levelled matters, and he grabbed the winner deep in stoppage-time with a predatory finish.

Forward: Ryan Lowe (Crewe Alexandra)

Last but not least is this man, whose spectacular cameo turned Crewe's tie with Sheffield United on its head.

The 37-year-old striker struck in the 89th minute to take the game to extra-time, and the Alex hero doubled his tally in the 100th minute to send the League Two outfit through.

Manager: Gary Johnson (Cheltenham Town)

Plenty of Cheltenham players were suggested for a place in the Team of the Round, but we couldn't narrow it down to just one!

So credit must go to the man who picked them all, Gary Johnson, who then worked his magic from the sidelines as the Robins dumped Charlton Athletic out of the Cup with a 1-0 win.

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