The Sky Blue Trust have sent the following letter to the Football League.
To Chairman & Board of the Football League
Coventry City Football Club
The Sky Blue Trust is the largest independent Coventry City supporters organisation, with over 2200 members. Recent events at our club have left the Trust and CCFC fans in general deeply concerned for the future of our club. The purpose of this letter is request that the Football League investigate thoroughly these events and act to secure the future of our club, in Coventry, under responsible ownership.
Above all else, Coventry fans want to see their club play in their City. The current and proposed future owners have made clear their intention to move the club away from Coventry and are not planning on returning within the City boundary. Fans on media sites, online forums and at club organised forums have steadfastly rejected this proposal in great numbers. It must be clear to the owners that nearly all fans do not support the move. The football community in Coventry have rejected the owners’ plan.
The Football League in its values state
“We are at the heart of 72 communities across England and Wales, and share the pride and heritage of each.”
We are looking to the Football League to demonstrate the truth of this core value at a time when the heart of our community is proposed to be transplanted miles away.
The club must be viable. We all accept that. Yet we have been told that the planned move will increase the losses made by the club, will cost millions in building a new ground which will increase the current stated debts of £70m. How is such debt supportable when faced with the certainty that the lifeblood of the Club, its fans, will reject the owners’ plans, voting with their feet?
The Football League, we understand, has a defined policy in respect of insolvent clubs. We are told that requirements include:
- Proof of funding;
- Monthly monitoring of a clubs financial performance;
- Share capital of £500k in League 1 for new companies, The Football League share was confirmed as Coventry City Football Club Ltd and therefore membership by another company to operate CCFC would be a new company;
- Security of Ground Tenure for 10 years;
- Owners that meet the requirements of the owners and directors test;
- A financial bond whilst playing outside the club’s conurbation;
- A clear and defined plan to move back in to the clubs conurbation in a set timescale.
Please can you confirm how these requirements are proposed to be met by the new owners of CCFC?
The club has been in dispute with its landlord but it has not, as the Club CEO continually asserts, been “locked out.” The owners of the Ricoh Arena remain keen for the team to play home games at the stadium and are ready to hold urgent discussions with the Club. The owners have chosen to ignore that and follow their planned relocation for reasons of their own, which have never been satisfactorily explained. It makes no sense to fans for the owners to risk the future of the club on a plan that has no clear basis, with no land purchased for their planned stadium no planning permission, therefore, no secure financial plan and, most importantly, no fan support and so - no income.
How can the Football League allow our club to be put at risk in this manner?
We believe that the Football League must investigate the proposed ownership of our club. Do the owners and directors meet the League’s requirements? There is evidence that suggests the proposed new owner is nothing more than a shell company,: is that really the type of ownership that the Football League believes is in the best interests of football?
We believe it is time that the football authorities urgently make efforts to protect the one thing that truly matters – the interests of the fans. Without them no club is viable
We are looking forward to meeting your representatives next week, to discuss in detail the concerns our members and CCFC fans generally have and to understand in detail the action the Football League will take to address them properly.
Keep our Club in Coventry
The Sky Blue Trust
Source: Coventry MAD