Dates for your diary for two tournamentsWe’re bringing your more dates for your diaries… the fixtures for the group stages of our EFL Trophy and Premier League International Cup matches have both been provisionally arranged.
It will be our first involvement in the EFL Trophy since we met Barnet in the Southern Section quarter-final in 2002 – and the newly revamped tournament, including 16 teams with Category 1 academies and the 48 clubs in League 1 and League 2, means that we’ll be entering a side which will feature at least six Under-21 players in the starting XI for each game.
We will meet League 2’s Yeovil and Portsmouth in our group, as well as Bristol Rovers, who were promoted to League 1 last summer; the top two teams will progress to the next round.
Meanwhile it’ll be our very first involvement in the Premier League International Cup, in the third instalment of the competition. Similarly to the Premier League 2, it is a competition designed to be contested by Under-23 squads from some of Europe’s finest. The 24 teams have been split into six pools of four, comprising of two English clubs and two from the continent.
Everton are the other domestic club in our group, while Basque outfit Athletic Bilbao and German side Hertha Berlin will be our visitors. Each of the group winners will progress to the next stage, along with the two best-placed runners-up.
Here are the provisional dates for the two competitions…
Bristol Rovers – Tuesday 30th August, 7.45pm – Memorial Stadium
Portsmouth – Tuesday 4th October, 7.45pm – Fratton Park
Yeovil Town – Wednesday 9th November, 7.30pm – Madejski Stadium
Premier League International Cup
Everton – Thursday 18th August, 7pm – Haig Avenue, Southport
Athletic Bilbao – Wednesday 23rd November, 7pm – venue TBC
Hertha Berlin – Wednesday 14th December, 7pm – venue TBC
Our draw for the Premier League Cup – which will also take on a group stage format for the first time this year as well – is due to take place in around three weeks’ time.
The Premier League 2 campaign for our Under-23s begins this Friday with a trip to Arsenal; to see their full fixture list for their league campaign, click here.