Next Game

Newport v Coventry

Tuesday, 29 July 2014, 19:30

Friendly Match

Coventry to play at Sixfields

Coventry will play their home matches at Northampton's Sixfields Stadium for the next three seasons, the Football League has confirmed.

Last Updated: 08/07/13 at 20:48 Post Comment

Ricoh Arena: Coventry unable to resolve differences with stadium owners

Ricoh Arena: Coventry unable to resolve differences with stadium owners

The cash-strapped League One club have been embroiled in a long-running rent dispute with Ricoh Arena owners Arena Coventry Ltd, and both parties have been unable to resolve their differences.

Coventry were issued a winding-up order earlier this year and placed in administration after ACL took them to court claiming unpaid rent of £1.3m.

The Otium Entertainment Group, the City administrators' "preferred biffer", were forced to submit a bid to the Football League and Northampton Town to relocate to Sixfields.

The bid has now been approved, although it is subject to Otium paying a "performance bond" of £1m as an assurance that they will work to move the club back to Coventry as soon as possible.

A Football League statement read: "The board of directors of The Football League has reluctantly approved an application by Otium Entertainment Group - the Administrator's preferred bidder for Coventry City FC Limited - for Coventry City to play its home matches at Northampton Town's Sixfields Stadium for an initial period of three seasons.

"In the board's view, it was a matter of 'deep regret' that it had not proved possible for the club's proposed purchaser to reconcile its differences with the owners of the Ricoh Arena - Arena Coventry Limited (ACL)."

Football League chairman Greg Clarke said: "The Football League believes that clubs should play in the towns and cities from which they take their name.

"Nonetheless, from time to time, the board is asked to consider temporary relocations as a means for securing a club's ongoing participation in our competition.

"With no prospect of an agreement being reached between Otium and ACL, the board was placed in an unenviable position - with the very real possibility of Coventry City being unable to fulfil its fixtures for next season.

"This would inevitably call into question the club's continued membership of The Football League.

"The board did not take this decision lightly and it remains a matter of deep regret that the two parties involved cannot come to an agreement.

"I urge both Otium and ACL to continue to explore every possible opportunity to resolve this dispute, for the good of the City of Coventry, its football club and people living in the local community."

ACL issued an official statement saying they were still keen to explore the possibility of keeping the club in the city and it read: "Like all Sky Blues fans, we want Coventry City Football Club playing in Coventry.

"We have repeatedly said that we are happy to discuss terms to allow the Sky Blues to continue playing at the Ricoh Arena - and have even offered to allow them to play for free while the club remains in administration. This offer was made a month ago and we still have not had a response.

"We are therefore deeply disappointed at the Football League's decision to allow the club to leave the city for three years. We understand that they are under considerable pressure to finalise the fixtures before the start of the season and that they are being placed in a very awkward position by both the administrator and the current preferred bidders, Otium Entertainment.

"There is no need to force fans to travel 30 miles to watch a 'home game'. The Ricoh Arena is available to them. We want them here. The fans want them here. The only people who want the Sky Blues to leave Coventry are the ones with no connection to this city."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e made his power play to try and get Sheikhy to raise his wages or trade him to PSG. PSG were probably not interested and he is stuck with no cake and no vacation. @Jay_D> Surely you jest about FFP being real, right? All Platini is doing is making billionaries pay measly fines, so he and his cronies can get rich. If a fool can pay 50 mil for David Luiz, he will happily pay some fine to UEFA. FFP has failed as for it to succeed UEFA had to take it...

Synergy
Toure: I am staying with City

G

uess we can expect Toure's explanation of his behaviour around the same time Pete Townshend publishes his book then.

ceeps
Toure: I am staying with City

D

amn you Yaya, don't scare me like that! I only ate the icing. I didn't eat the soft and scrumptious middle - I will buy you another cake!

MCFC87
Toure: I am staying with City

Footer 365

Gareth Bale says Real Madrid are eyeing a six-trophy campaign this season

Gareth Bale says Real Madrid are targeting an even bigger trophy haul this season.

Friendly: Manchester United beat LA Galaxy 7-0 as Louis van Gaal era opens in style

Wayne Rooney, Reece James and Ashley Young all scored twice as Manchester United beat LA Galaxy 7-0 in Pasadena.

Premier League: Gylfi Sigurdsson delighted with move to Swansea from Tottenham

Gylfi Sigurdsson has told Sky Sports he is delighted to have joined former club Swansea from Tottenham.

Mail Box

Defending Woodward With Perspective

One Mailer is telling us to hold fire on our Woodward criticism, whilst we also have some wonderful PFA Team of The year geekery, a well done to Vieira and much more...

Why The Obsession Over The Captaincy?

Asks the morning mailbox, before hastily returning to the debate over who should replace Steven Gerrard. Plus, thoughts on Ed Woodward's spending plans and more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property