Coventry reach short-term Ricoh deal

28 March 2013 11:17

Coventry have finally reached a short-term agreement to play their three remaining home games this season at the Ricoh Arena.

Amid an ongoing row between the Sky Blues and Arena Coventry Limited (ACL), who manage the stadium and claim to be owed over £1.3million in unpaid rent stretching back 12 months, the npower League One outfit last week placed a non-operating subsidiary of the club into administration.

But a statement released on Thursday morning read: "Coventry City Football Club Holdings Ltd are pleased that an agreement has been reached with ACL and the administrator that enables us to play our last three remaining home matches at the Ricoh Arena."

That non-operating subsidiary, Coventry City Football Club Limited, held the lease and licence for the Ricoh Arena, covering permission to play home matches at the stadium as well as the rental of the club shop and offices, which have already been emptied, with all staff having moved to their Ryton training ground.

It sparked speculation and uncertainty over where City would play their remaining home fixtures this term, starting with Good Friday's visit of league leaders Doncaster.

But the statement continued: "We apologise profusely to our fans about the confusion surrounding these fixtures and are delighted that this has now been resolved.

"We can now look forward to playing current league leaders Doncaster on Friday 29th March in the hope of doing the double over them.

"Moving forward we hope that we can continue a constructive dialogue with ACL with the aim of securing a sustainable future for the club at the Ricoh Arena."

The final line of Coventry's statement suggests the club's long-term future may still lie at the venue, which is jointly owned by the Alan Edward Higgs Charity and Coventry City Council.

The lengthy row centres around Coventry's refusal to pay an annual rental fee of £1.28m, the highest in both League One and the Championship by some considerable distance, while also bemoaning the fact they do not get access to 100 per cent of matchday revenue.

Source: PA

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