Teenage striker Alex Fletcher’s late brace guided Plymouth Argyle to a penalty shootout win over Chelsea’s Under 21’s in the Checkatrade Trophy.
Fletcher was making his first start for the Pilgrims, and his late goals cancelled out an earlier double from Chelsea’s 16-year-old winger Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Plymouth went on to win 5-4 in the penalty shootout, after Blues substitute Jacob Maddox’s effort hit the post.
The Greens spot-kick win gives them two points and moves them top of the Southern Group D. The draw for Chelsea earns them a point and they rise to second position; Exeter and Yeovil are the other two sides in the group and they have not yet played their opening fixture.
Here’s how the players got on during the encounter at Home Park.
Robbert te Loeke 6
The goalkeeper had a very solid first half in the Plymouth goal and there was not a lot that he could have done to prevent Hudson-Odoi’s goal. He really should have put more of an effort to deny the visitor’s second goal.
Gary Miller 6
Miller struggled to deal with the oncoming threat of Hudson-Odoi down Chelsea’s left side. He was more comfortable in the second half when the Chelsea forward switched position.
Yann Songo’o 5
Despite having one of the Greens’ best efforts in the second half, Songo’o was error prone throughout the match and his mistake led the Blues’s opener.
Jakub Sokolik 6
When called into action, Sokolik comfortably cleared his lines on several occasions. A lot of the Blues’ chances came via the flanks leaving Sokolik with not a lot to do.
Aaron Taylor-Sinclair 5
The defender was often drawn inside the defence by Dujon Sterling, enabling right back Reece James to regularly overlap.
Antoni Sarcevic 7
During his 45 minute performance, Sarcevic was good both offensively and defensively. The Greens struggled after the starting captain was replaced at half time.
Jamie Ness 7
Ness partnered Sarcevic well in midfield and looked comfortable on the ball before being taken off on the hour mark.
Lionel Ainsworth 7
The former Motherwell winger provided a lot of chances for Argyle. His pace and trickery troubled the young Blues but he struggled in front of goal.
Ruben Lameiras 7
In the ‘number 10’ role, Lameiras also showed a wide range of passing and fantastic ball control. He provided good service for the forwards that they were unable to do much with.
Gregg Wylde 7
The winger threatened primarily during the first half, although his speed was not enough. His parried shot lead to the Green’s first goal.
Alex Fletcher 8
He struggled for the majority of the match, but two goals in three minutes towards the end and a scored penalty in the shootout made it a very memorable first start for the teenage striker.
David Fox 6
Fox failed to grasp a hold of the game when he came on at half time. A scored penalty in the shootout made up for a surprisingly poor performance from the midfielder.
Graham Carey 7
The Irishman played in an unusually deep role for the final half an hour. His passing range in the latter parts led to Argyle’s late fightback; he also scored the Pilgrims’ first penalty.
Nathan Blissett 5
The physical presence that is Nathan Blissett failed to make any real impact on the game following a very late introduction.
Chelsea Under 21’s
Jamie Cumming 5
Cumming was hardly tested during the match, conceding two of Argyle’s few shots on target and failing to save a single penalty in the shootout summarised a poor performance from him.
Reece James 7
James looked keen to attack on several occasions for Joe Edwards’ side and proved to be one of the better attacking threats for the visitors.
Joseph Colley 6
Showed maturity during the match but not many of the attacks came towards the Swedish youth international.
Ethan Ampadu 7
Ampadu looked comfortable clearing the ball on many instances and showed leadership, despite being one of the younger members of the side.
Cole Dasilva 5
The brother of Charlton loanee Jay struggled to deal with the speed of Plymouth winger Ainsworth, who created a lot of chances for the hosts in the first half.
Luke McCormick 7
He was barely noticeable during the first period, but the man with the same name as the Pilgrims’ club captain shone in the second half and showed his ability as a box-to-box midfielder.
Ruben Sammut 5
The Blues skipper found himself being passed around by the likes of Ness, Sarcevic and Lameiras. He failed to make any impact on the tie.
Dujon Sterling 7
Sterling’s runs allowed for teammate James to regularly overlap him. The winger’s versatility proved to be key when covering for a number of his adventurously-minded colleagues.
Callum Hudson-Odoi 9
Hudson-Odoi was outstanding for Edwards’ side. The 16-year-old tore apart the Plymouth defence from start to finish. He could have scored more than twice and he should’ve secured a hat-trick when he rounded Robbert te Loeke whilst the Blues were 1-0 up.
Martell Taylor-Crossdale 5
The highly-rated forward failed to test the Argyle back line of te Loeke all game. It is not a performance he will remember in the future.
Jacob Maddox 5
His 30 minute role in the game was rather ineffective. His penalty crashed off the post which proved to be enough to send his side to defeat.
Juan Castillo 5
Castillo was introduced with 20 minutes left to play. His attempts to add a creative spark to the side backfired, with both of Plymouth’s goals coming after his introduction.
Miro Muheim 6
Muheim scored the Blues’ second penalty after making a cameo role in the match.