Forest Green Rovers exited the Papa John’s Trophy after losing 4-1 on penalties to Oxford United on Tuesday night.

The game, over 90 minutes, was a fairly even affair and on the stroke of half-time Odin Bailey gave the visitors the lead with a nonchalant headed effort.

However, Bailey’s birthday goal was cancelled out after 64 minutes as QPR loanee Olamide Shodipo levelled the contest for the hosts.

With neither side able to find a winner over 90 minutes, the game was decided on penalties where Rovers bowed out as 4-1 losers.

Simon Eastwood saved from Scott Wagstaff while Udoka Godwin-Malife hit the crossbar and Forest Green boss Mark Cooper was disappointed with his side’s efforts from the spot.

“It’s a skill,” he said speaking to BBC Radio Gloucestershire. “There’s a group of players that practise every day at penalties and they make a mess of the pitch and the penalty spot and they score nearly every time – when it comes to the big games, they miss the target.”

Rovers fielded a strong side to face their League One opponents and Cooper felt his side could have performed better than they did.

He said: “We didn’t play particularly great.

“We had Odin (Bailey) on the pitch, Matty (Stevens) on the pitch, we had Jamma (Jamille Matt) on the pitch and we tried to keep a bit of consistency.

“Until the last 10 minutes we didn’t really create enough.”

Defender Jordan Moore-Taylor exited the field of play after 37 minutes and was replaced by Dominic Bernard as the 26-year-old looked to have sustained an injury.

Cooper was able to shine some light on the situation as he said: “He tweaked his hamstring, I think.

“The players should be able to play two games a week and shouldn’t be pulling hamstrings in the fifth minute of the game.”

Forest Green next face seventh placed Cambridge United in the league and Cooper admitted that it will be a tricky outing for his team.

“It’ll be a tough game but we’re looking forward to it,” he added. “We’re in the top three and we want to stay there and it gives us a chance to get three points and stay there.”

The game will take place on Saturday afternoon as fans are welcomed back to the New Lawn.