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Format for EFL Trophy

6 July 2016

Plans announced for competition next season

The English Football League has confirmed the format of the EFL Trophy 2016/17 as follows:

The top two sides in each group will then go into a knockout stage that will culminate in a showpiece final at Wembley Stadium on April 2. A total of 64 clubs will compete in the competition beginning with 16 groups of four teams, each of which will include at least one club from each of Leagues One and Two, along with one invited team.


48 clubs from League One and Two.  •

16 invited Category One Academy teams.  •

Eligibility Criteria

EFL Clubs – a minimum of 5 ‘First Team’ players in the starting 11 as defined under the competition’s existing rules.  •

Invited Clubs – 6 of the starting 11 to be U-21 (as at June 30).  •

Group Stage

16 groups of 4 teams organised on a regionalised basis.  •

Groups to include one invited club and at least one club from each of Leagues One and Two.  •

Invited clubs will play one home game at the club’s first team stadium.  Clubs to play each other once, either home or away.  •

In the event of a drawn game (after 90 minutes), a penalty shootout will be held with the winning team earning an additional point.  Clubs will be awarded 3 points for a win and 1 point for a draw.  •

The top two teams will progress to the knockout stage.  •

Knockout Stage

Round 2 (32 teams) will remain regionalised with each group winner being drawn at home to a second placed team from a different qualifying group.  •

Round 3 (16 teams) and Round 4 (8 teams) will be ‘free’ draws.  •

Semi-finals (4 teams) will be a 'free’ draw and will consist of single ties played at the stadium of the club drawn first in each tie.  •

The EFL will confirm arrangements for the Semi-Finals and Final in due course following further consultation.  If scores are level after 90 minutes in Rounds 2, 3 and 4, the game will be determined by the taking of penalties.  •


Group Stage

w/c 29 August 2016  •

w/c 3 October 2016  •

w/c 7 November 2016  •

Round 2 - w/c 5th December 2016  •

Round 3 - w/c 9th January 2017  •

Round 4 - w/c 23rd January 2017  •

Semi- Final - w/c 20th February 2017  •

Final - 2nd April 2017 (Wembley Stadium)  •

The date of the draw for the group stage will be announced in due course.

Match Proceeds 

After deduction of match expenses, all proceeds will be split:

45 per cent home club  •

45 per cent away club  •

10 per cent to the pool account  •

Invited clubs will donate all or some of their share of gate receipts to a fund that will be shared equally by League One and Two clubs.   •

Group Stage - Invited Clubs will donate their 45 per cent share to the fund.

Knockout Stage - Invited Clubs will retain 25 per cent of their share and donate 20 per cent to the fund.

Semi-finals & Final - Invited Clubs will retain 30 per cent of their share and donate 15 per cent to the fund.

  on this.announcementView the full EFL 

.EFL TrophyTo see what the Dons Trust has previously said about the new format, click on 

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