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Dan Agyei and Josh Ginnelly, currently on loan at managerless Coventry City and Walsall, were star performers last night as their respective teams won Checkatrade Trophy ties against Northampton Town and Sheffield United.

I’m sure a lot of people are asking what on earth the Checkatrade Trophy is and for me, despite its many sponsors over the years, will always be known as the Sherpa Van Trophy, its name for just two season, 1987/88 and 1988/89.

It’s become a bit of a farce this season. Changed initially to the EFL Trophy, prior to the sponsorship deal with Checkatrade, the competition has allowed in some category 1 under-23 teams. It’s not gone down well with supporters of League One and League Two clubs, and rightly so, but that won’t have concerned the two young Clarets.

Agyei (pictured top left) was making his tenth appearance for Coventry last night. He’d scored one goal for them previously, that on his debut against Bradford City, but it didn’t take him long against Sheffield United to register his second goal.

In the very first minute of the game he came into his own half to collect the ball just inside the right touchline. From there he went on a run, going past a number of Northampton defenders. He eventually got into the box, just behind the penalty spot and from there curled in a superb left foot shot into the bottom corner of the net.

Even though Northampton were level within a minute, it proved to be a winning night for the Sky Blues. They beat Northampton 3-1, their second win in the competition which now ensures qualification for the knock out stage.

Ginnelly (bottom right) has found first team action more difficult to come by at Walsall. He hasn’t kicked a ball for them in League One and prior to last night had played only twice, in the League Cup defeat against Yeovil and the 5-2 home win against Grimsby in the Checkatrade.

Last night he was in the starting eleven and played the first 74 minutes of a 2-1 win at Bramall Lane and it was a team performance that pleased manager Jon Whitney who singled out the performance of Ginnelly.

Whitney said: “The pleasing thing for me is when you see Josh Ginnelly. That’s what I saw in Josh, and today you see his work ethic for the team enabled him to flourish and show his individual skill set so that was the most pleasing thing, and that added to a great team effort.”

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