Shrewsbury Town are out of the EFL Trophy after succumbing to a penalty shootout defeat against a vibrant Manchester City outfit.
Shrewsbury Town were eliminated at this stage last season on penalties by Port Vale. And history repeated itself for the second year running as Manchester City’s developmental side ended their run.
Scott Golbourne had put Town ahead in the first half with a howitzer of a strike. However, Town were poor in the second half – lacking in creativity and intensity.
Captain Tommy Doyle equalised in the second period for the visitors, with City progressing thanks to the dreaded lottery.
Sam Ricketts made six changes from the side that beat Mansfield 2-0. Lenell John-Lewis and Dan Udoh teamed up in attack, whilst there were also starts for Brad Walker, Sean Goss, Ryan Giles, and Omar Beckles.
Shrewsbury announced a surprise pre-match addition. Former Oldham Athletic midfielder Ousmane Fane has joined the club – the Frenchman has penned an initial deal until the end of the campaign. He took a place on the bench.
Manchester City U21’s, managed by ex Scunthorpe midfielder Paul Harsley – began the contest at a blistering pace. Intricate work down the channel eventually saw the ball fall to Tommy Doyle inside the area. His inventive effort was parried behind by Max O’Leary.
At the other end, Wolves loanee Ryan Giles was conducting the Shrewsbury Town orchestra. His cross was powered over by Lenell John-Lewis from close range. The former AFC Telford loanee also forced goalkeeper Daniel Grimshaw into a strong stop.
Giles continued to run the show. His latest delivery aimed for John-Lewis was nodded narrowly wide by the striker.
Town’s early dominance paid off in the 24th minute. Josh Laurent steamed forward and teed up Scott Golbourne. The full-back blasted a 25-yard strike beyond the reaches of Grimshaw and into the back of the net.
City responded well to going behind. Nabil Touaizi produced a marauding run and turned possession over to former West Brom youngster Morgan Rogers. His low effort was blocked by the legs of Max O’Leary.
Just before the break, Max O’Leary was called into action once more. The Bristol City loanee had to be alert to push Tommy Doyle’s free-kick to safety.
Shrewsbury were woeful in the second half and opportunities in the early stages were at a premium. The visitors were eye-catching on the ball without threatening in an attacking sense – Doyle did lift a shot well over the bar though.
The best it got for Town was Brad Walker’s set-piece, but it was comfortably gathered by Daniel Grimshaw.
Instead Manchester City continued to grow in confidence. The impressive Poveda-Ocampo, an England U20 international, saw his effort blocked by Brad Walker. The ball was recycled back into the danger area, but Spaniard Adrian Bernabe could only nod over.
The visitors deservedly levelled the score with 22 minutes of normal time remaining. Max O’Leary stood no chance, as Tommy Doyle whipped a free-kick around the wall and beyond the Town keeper.
Shrewsbury’s response was futile. Substitute Fejiri Okenabirhie found Row Z with an ambitious long-range effort.
Paul Harsley’s side remained in the ascendancy for the rest of the contest. Nathanael Ogbeta galloped down the flank and put the ball on a plate for Poveda Ocampo, but he was unable to connect.
Toward the end of the contest substitute Keyendrah Simmonds managed to wriggle free, and send a low strike past the post. He then produced a sharp turn in the box, but his shot was clawed away by Max O’Leary.
The two sides were level at the final whistle, and a penalty shootout unfolded. Ollie Norburn, Brad Walker, Dave Edwards, Fejiri Okenabirhie, and Sean Goss scored for Town. Tommy Doyle, Rowan McDonald, Lewis Fiorini, Adrian Bernabe, and Keyendrah Simmonds achieved the same feat. With the score at 5-5, Poveda-Ocampo converted his spot-kick. Daniel Grimshaw thwarted Scott Golbourne’s attempt, and Town were eliminated from the competition.
Sam Ricketts is unlikely to be happy with his side after a torrid second half. Shrewsbury visit in-form Oxford United on Saturday, whilst Manchester City’s developmental side face Southampton on Friday.
Attendance: 1,384 (53 away fans)
Team Line Ups:
Shrewsbury Town: (3-5-2)
25. O’Leary, 5. Williams, 6. Beckles, 3. Golbourne, 8. Norburn, 15. Walker, 22. Goss, 28. Laurent (79), 11. Giles, 23. Udoh (83), 14. John-Lewis (67)
Subs: 1. Murphy, 4. Edwards (83), 10. Okenabirhie (67), 18. McCormick (79), 20. Fane, 35. Cummings, 36. Caton
Subs Not Used: 1. Murphy, 20. Fane, 35. Cummings, 36. Caton
Manchester City U21: (4-3-3)
32. Grimshaw, 88. Diounkou (93), 64. McDonald, 78. Harwood, 62. Ogbeta, 66. La Rosa, 69. Doyle, 82. Bernabe, 83. Poveda-Ocampo, 72. Rogers (64), 51. Touaizi (67)
Subs: 52. Wilson, 58. Scott, 60. Dele-Bashiru (64), 63. Simmonds (67), 71. Fiorini (93), 94. Burns, 96. Knight
Subs Not Used: 52. Wilson, 58. Scott, 94. Burns, 96. Knight
Other EFL Trophy Round 2 Results:
(at the time of writing)
Brighton 0 – 0 Newport (Newport win 5-4 on pens)
Colchester 1 – 2 Stevenage
MK Dons 2 – 0 Coventry
Port Vale 2 – 2 Mansfield (Port Vale win 4-2 on pens)
Portsmouth 2 – 1 Northampton
Salford 3 – 0 Wolves U21
Walsall 3 – 2 Chelsea U21