EFL to use new ABBA penalty shootout format

The English Football League (EFL) will use the new ABBA format for penalty shoot-outs in competitions starting this season.

The ABBA format is similar to the system used in tennis tie-breaks, with a single kick followed by alternating pairs of kicks for each team AB BA AB and so on, instead of the traditional AB, AB format, and is already being trialled by UEFA.

It was used for the first time recently at the women’s U17 European Championships.

The EFL will trial the new format in the Carabao Cup, the Checkatrade Trophy and the end of season promotion play-offs, with its debut likely to occur in the first round of the Carabao Cup on on August 8-9.

EFL Chief Executive Shaun Harvey said in a statement: "We welcome innovation at the EFL and I am pleased to see that the EFL is able to play its part in an important development for football.

"IFAB have identified a theory that the current arrangements for penalty kicks potentially provide an unfair advantage to the team taking the first kick so we are keen to see if the new system has an impact on one of the most discussed issues in football.

"We all want football matches to be decided in a fair and consistent manner and I am sure the new system will add an interesting dynamic to the conclusion of matches in our competitions if required."

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