We are in Southern Group F with all three group matches played away. Fixtures begin the week commencing 28 August.
It will be the first time we've played AFC Wimbledon (formed in 2004 after the original Wimbledon became MK Dons) and Barnet in competitive action. We've played a number of times against Luton, the last competitively in the old First Division back in 1992.
AFC Wimbledon competed in League One for the first time last season and finished 15th. They have two familiar faces in their ranks - Dean Parrett and Andy Barcham. Both graduated through our Academy to make first team appearances - Dean played four times in the Europa League, Andy once in the League Cup. AFC Wimbledon currently play at The Cherry Red Records Stadium (formerly Kingsmeadow Stadium) which they share with Kingstonian FC.
Luton Town were fourth in League Two last season but knocked-out in the semi-finals of the play-offs by eventual-winners Blackpool. They still play at Kenilworth Road and we were last there for a friendly in 2001.
Barnet finished 15th in League Two last season and this will be our first visit to The Hive, their home since 2013 having formerly played at Underhill.
The competition is in Northern and Southern sections, with eight teams in each. The group stages are regionalised with all invited Under-21 teams playing their group matches away. The top two teams from each group progress to the knockout stage, which remains regionalised. The competition goes national at the quarter-final stage. The final is at Wembley Stadium. Coventry City beat Oxford in the final last season.
Head of Player Development John McDermott said: “We took the decision to enter the competition as it is beneficial for the Development Squad’s scheduling this year. We know the EFL Trophy will provide a massive challenge for us and we look forward to testing ourselves.”
The full draw is HERE...