The Checkatrade Trophy continued on Tuesday evening, with no shortage of goals and impressive displays.
Newcastle United U21’s competition debut saw them get off to a winning start, turning in a mature performance to emerge 2-1 victors at Crewe Alexandra – Liam Smith and Luke Charman the scorers for the Magpies.
Reading’s youngsters drew 2-2 at Colchester United, but the hosts – who had Academy product Eoin McKeown to thank for a late equaliser – earned the bonus point via the new ‘ABBA’ penalty shoot-out format.
Elsewhere, a crowd of just under 2,500 watched on at the One Call Stadium, where Lincoln City prevailed over Sky Bet League Two counterparts Mansfield Town, with former Stags duo Ollie Palmer and Matt Green among the goals for the Imps.
Numerous players were given the opportunity to take their first steps for their respective clubs on Tuesday night, and there was the added bonus of a win for many of those.
From a results perspective, things couldn’t have got any better for Bristol Rovers’ Luke Russe, who came off the bench to make his professional debut in the emphatic 5-1 away success at Wycombe Wanderers.
There was also a maiden triumph for Scunthorpe United ‘keeper Rory Watson. The shot-stopper, who joined from Hull City last January, hadn’t appeared for the Iron up until last night, but he completed a full 90 minutes as Graham Alexander’s side ran out 3-1 winners over Sunderland U21.
Another to enjoy a successful start was 19-year-old Jordan Gibson. The Bradford City forward replaced Daniel Pybus, and got a taste of first team football for the Bantams in their 4-2 victory against Chesterfield.
There were six or more goals in four of Tuesday’s fixtures, with the highest scoring affair coming at the Lamex Stadium, where Oxford United turned on the style to defeat Stevenage 6-2.
Pep Clotet’s men actually fell behind, but goals from James Henry, Rob Hall (2), Jonathan Obika, Joe Rothwell and Jack Payne capped an emphatic night’s work for the U’s, who also handed a debut to Shandon Baptiste.
The aforementioned Bristol Rovers and Bradford enjoyed successful trips on their travels, with Dominic Telford (2), Ryan Broom (2) and Liam Sercombe all getting in on the act as the Pirates eased past Wycombe.
The Bantams moved top of their group courtesy of goals from Omari Patrick, Jacob Hanson and an Alex Jones brace at the Proact Stadium.
There was a seven-goal thriller between Barnet and AFC Wimbledon at the Hive, where the Sky Bet League One side prevailed by a 4-3 scoreline.
Checkatrade Trophy results
Tuesday 29th August
North: Group A
Fleetwood Town 3-0 Leicester City U21
Morecambe 0-2 Carlisle United
North: Group B
Blackpool 1-1 Wigan Athletic (Wigan win 5-4 on penalties)
North: Group C
Blackburn Rovers 1-0 Stoke City U21
North: Group D
Crewe Alexandra 1-2 Newcastle United U21
Oldham Athletic 0-0 Port Vale (Port Vale win 4-2 on penalties)
North: Group E
Coventry City 2-3 Shrewsbury Town
North: Group F
Chesterfield 2-4 Bradford City
North: Group G
Mansfield Town 1-3 Lincoln City
North: Group H
Grimsby Town 1-1 Doncaster Rovers (Doncaster win 4-3 on penalties)
Scunthorpe United 3-1 Sunderland U21
South: Group A
Crawley Town 0-2 Charlton Athletic
South: Group B
Colchester United 2-2 Reading U21 (Colchester win 6-5 on penalties)
Gillingham 2-1 Southend United
South: Group C
Wycombe Wanderers 1-5 Bristol Rovers
South: Group D
Exeter City 1-3 Yeovil Town
South: Group E
Forest Green Rovers 2-0 Newport County
South: Group F
Barnet 3-4 AFC Wimbledon
South: Group G
Milton Keynes Dons 2-0 Brighton and Hove Albion U21
Stevenage 2-6 Oxford United
South: Group H
Northampton Town 1-1 Cambridge United (Northampton win 5-4 on penalties)
Peterborough United 2-0 Southampton U21