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EFL meeting cancelled as Sky Blues agree terms on groundshare

Coventry City has confirmed Wednesday's EGM meeting, which could have seen the club expelled from the Football League, has been cancelled.

It comes amid news the Sky Blues have agreed terms on a groundshare arrangement for next season, which will be used as a back up option if the club fails to strike a deal with Ricoh Arena owners Wasps on extending their tenancy at the stadium.

The Rugby club confirmed last week that talks for CCFC to remain at the venue had stalled, after it was made aware of a complaint football club owner's SISU had made to the European Commission regarding the stadium's sale in 2014.

Coventry City has today announced negotiations over the Ricoh are continuing.

The full statement from the Sky Blues reads as follows:

"Coventry City can confirm that the planned English Football League EGM and vote regarding the Club’s place in the EFL has now been cancelled.

"This is because the Club has met the EFL’s criteria regarding ensuring a venue for matches next season and the ability to fulfil fixtures, by now having a groundshare venue and agreement in place.

"This groundshare is in place to make sure the Club has somewhere to play in the scenario of a deal to play at the Ricoh Arena not being agreed.

"We can confirm that talks with the aim to achieve a deal to play at the Ricoh Arena are continuing between Coventry City Football Club, its owners SISU and Wasps Holdings Limited.

"Our focus and desire is to agree a deal at the Ricoh Arena - this is everyone's preferred option, and the right option for Coventry City. While the backup of a groundshare exists to ensure the future of the Football Club continues, another groundshare is not something anyone wants to happen.

"Details of the agreed groundshare and of our ongoing discussions with Wasps Holdings Limited remain confidential, due to mutually signed confidentiality agreements.

"We understand the frustration that fans are feeling, and have expressed to us, at not knowing where their Club will be playing next season, not being able to plan for next season and supporting Mark Robins and the team, and the time that this is taking.

"We will provide a further update to supporters as soon as we are able to."

 

Fan group the Sky Blue Trust has also released a statement in reaction to this latest development:

"The Sky Blue Trust notes the statement from Coventry City FC advising that the scheduled EFL meeting this week has been cancelled and that a 'Plan B' ground share arrangement has been agreed with another Football League club, believed to be Birmingham City FC.

"Whilst we acknowledge that it is good news that the club owners and Wasps are still talking with a view to agreeing a mutually beneficial deal to play at the Ricoh, we once again make clear our view that Coventry City FC must play in Coventry. Anything else will be a massive failure on all of those parties with the power to make it happen.

"As was made perfectly clear in the survey we facilitated for the EFL, a groundshare outside of Coventry, be it at St Andrews or anywhere else will be unacceptable to the vast majority of the Sky Blue Community. 

"We are therefore surprised and disappointed that the EFL appear to have accepted the groundshare backstop without any indication as to the date of when, if, how or under what conditions they will ensure that SISU return our Club to our City should the groundshare be implemented.

"There is however still time to stop this disastrous measure so instead of wasting any more words we simply say to those who are letting our football club and our city down so badly.

"GET IT SORTED QUICKLY!" 

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