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Checkatrade Trophy Group Stage Explanation

8 November 2016

Going into the final round of games in the Spireites' Checkatrade Trophy Northern Group B, all four teams sit joint top and joint bottom on three points each.

With that in mind, and in an attempt to ward off at least some of the head scratching, we thought it would be good to look at the rules separating teams who end up level on points.

Before that, remember that it's three points for a win - but that in the event of a draw each team wins one point before an immediate penalty shoot-out, after which the winning side receives one bonus point (giving two in total).

Back to the group stage, this - straight from the EFL Trophy rulebook - is how teams level on points will be positioned:

If two or more clubs are equal on points on completion of the group matches the following criteria are applied in the order give to determine their rankings:

(A) goal difference;
(B) higher number of goals scored in the group matches;
(C) number of wins (after normal time i.e. not the result of any drawn match followed by penalties); 
(D) the record against each other in the group match, taking into account in order of precedence, points gained, goal difference, higher number of goals scored;
(E) if the clubs still have an equal ranking after the application of (A) to (C), by the drawing of lots. 

Got it? If the Spireites do progress to the knock-out stage they will be in a still-regional round of 32. The group winners of the northern section will play the group runners up, with the group winner at home in a one-legged 90 minute (then straight to penalties) match.

...let's hope the Spireites are 3-0 up by half time then.

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