Arena Coventry Limited, the owners of the Ricoh Arena, rejected a Company Voluntary Agreement at a creditors' meeting on Friday morning, leaving the club with little choice.
ACL have been embroiled in a bitter rent row with the Sky Blues which has resulted in them agreeing a controversial groundshare with Northampton. That has now been cleared.
ACL proposed some changes to administrator Paul Appleton's original CVA on Tuesday. That included an offer to the club to return to the Ricoh Arena on a greatly reduced rent with a 10-year lease, but the changes were not accepted by Appleton, resulting in ACL voting against allowing them to come out of administration.
Tim Fisher, Coventry chief executive, said: “We know that this has been an extremely difficult summer for our supporters and we are truly sorry that all of the attention has been off the field rather than on it.
“There has been a great deal of uncertainty surrounding the club’s future but this decision by the Football League means we now have certainty and the club’s future is secured. We can now get on and put our future plans into action which means building and owning our own stadium in the Coventry area.
“It has been a very difficult time but Coventry City Football Club moves forward.
“It’s made all the harder by the fact that the adjournments pushed the club right up to the deadline for the start of the season.
“Surely the events of the last few days and the abuse of the administration process highlight that the club had been left with very little room for manoeuvre.
“Indeed, I am sure that all the fans are aware that the very reason ACL stated for filing for administration in the first place was to avoid liquidation and a points deduction this season. Liquidation is exactly what they pushed for and succeeded in getting today.
“Whilst the points deduction is not welcomed, we believe the 10-point penalty proves that the Football League recognises the very difficult circumstances the club has been operating under.
“None of us want to start the season away from the club’s home city but previous refusals to take up our offer of negotiation or arbitration meant we were forced to find a ground to complete our fixtures.
“It is a great shame that on the eve of the season, off-the-field matters are still dominating but it is now time to offer full support to Steven Pressley and wish him and his team good luck tomorrow and for the rest of the season.”
The new owners have a four-year plan to return the club to a new stadium in the city.
The move was not well received by fans, with just over 200 of them reportedly buying season tickets.
- Sports & Recreation
- Sky Blues
- Ricoh Arena