Oxford United’s youngsters relished the sweet taste of revenge as they progressed into the area finals of the League Cup.
The Under-18s advanced to the penultimate round of the competition with a dramatic 10-9 penalty shoot-out win against Exeter City on Saturday.
The young U’s had lost twice to the EFL Youth Alliance South West champions already this season.
The pair of defeats bookended an impressive eight-match unbeaten run for the Yellows, which made getting their own back taste even sweeter for Leon Blackmore-Such’s side.
The game ended 3-3 with the Oxford goals coming from Owen James (twice) and right-back Dan Carr scoring the other to force penalties.
U’s stopper Max Harris converted the winning penalty in sudden death to set up an area final against Luton Town.
Blackmore-Such praised “a great performance” and said: “Credit to all of the players. We defended well, we took our chances, and then it was a good test of nerves when it went to penalties.”
He added: “Exeter have just won our league and have been in great form so when you factor in the journey down there then the odds were against us a little bit.
“We have spoken a lot this season about spirit and character and I think that’s what got us through in the end.”
United take on Luton Town at home in the Southern Area final on