Scottish League Cup: The new format

St Mirren capitain Jim Goodwin lifts the Scottish League Cup after the Buddies defeated Hearts 3-2 in the 2013 final. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
St Mirren capitain Jim Goodwin lifts the Scottish League Cup after the Buddies defeated Hearts 3-2 in the 2013 final. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
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THE SPFL yesterday unveiled radical new plans to shake up the Scottish League Cup competition.

There are eight stages of the revamped tournament:

• A new group stage format for the first round.

• Eight groups of five teams, playing each other once in round-robin format.

• Group games to take place on 16, 20, 23, 27 and 30 July.

• Group stage involves all 38 SPFL teams not involved in European qualifiers, plus winners of both Highland League and Lowland League.

• Group stage draw seeded and, where practicable, regionalised. One Premiership team in each group.

• Drawn matches in group stage go to penalty shoot-out, with bonus point for winners.

• Eight group winners and four best runners-up progress to second round where they are joined by the four teams involved in European football.

• Straight knockout formula, as presently exists, from the round of 16 with no seeded draws.

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