Following Coventry City’s 3-2 loss at Crawley Town in their first League One game of the 2013/2014 season, Arena Coventry Limited (ACL) have released a statement regarding their decision to reject the CVA yesterday resulting in Coventry City Ltd. entering liquidation, and a subsequent 10-point deduction.
FULL ACL STATEMENT:
“The Board of Arena Coventry Limited is extremely disappointed by the Football League’s decision yesterday evening relating to Coventry City Football Club. There are many more questions to be asked now of both the Joint Administrator Paul Appleton and Football League itself.
“That both these parties appear to have been complicit in allowing a company which has refused to pay its debts and fallen into administration, to then buy itself back with little or no consequence, beggars belief. The overwhelming majority of Sky Blues fans and indeed football fans in general are appalled by these actions.
“We are incredulous at The Football League’s continued disregard for its own regulations thus far in this saga. The Football League needs to protect its own credibility and refer this whole matter to the Football Association for review. Everyone associated with the game in this country will respect a Football Association judgement. We urge the Football League to make this referral as quickly as it was able to make a decision yesterday.
“We have also seen during the last 24 hours the emergence, via an independent website of documents, which appear to make a mockery of Mr Appleton’s supposedly lengthy hunt for Football League Golden Share. These documents show also that far more than the Golden Share lay in Coventry City Football Club Limited, which was also the location of the players, manager, gate revenues and everything else associated with the Football Club.
“If these documents are authentic, then those Directors of the Football Club present at the Coventry City Football Club (Holdings) Limited Board meeting in March 2008 need to speak out. Sky Blues fans need those Directors to explain how they think the purposes of Coventry City Football Club Limited and Coventry City Football Club (Holdings) Limited later became blurred.
“ACL originally acted to prevent the threat of liquidation of the Club issued by the current chief executive officer of Coventry City Football Club, Tim Fisher. ACL has since been working as hard as possible to keep Coventry City playing in Coventry and on a sound financial footing. Mr Fisher has also now chosen to make factually inaccurate public statements relating to the meeting attended by Joy Seppala as well as ACL Board members on Thursday 25 July.
“It is interesting to note Mr Fisher’s failure to mention Ms Seppala’s verbal statement during this meeting, made in the presence of her own lawyers that the only circumstance in which the Club would return to the Ricoh would be upon SISU assuming full ownership of the venue without any negotiation on purchase price.
“Ms Seppala also stated at this meeting her intention to continue to threaten ACL and its shareholders with expensive litigation at every possible opportunity. Perhaps the fact that Mr Fisher was not himself present at this meeting has distorted his view of what was really discussed.
“People can make their own minds up where blame for this upsetting situation lies. It is clear however that the actions of both Mr Appleton and the Football League should be scrutinised by Sky Blues fans, other football supporters representative groups, the media, the Football Association and Parliament.
“The liquidation process allows for detailed investigation of the failed business and we will be watching carefully to ensure this is carried out in an appropriate manner in the case of Coventry City Football Club Limited.
“We hope also that because of the questions being asked by supporters and other stakeholders about his actions, Mr Appleton will allow new, independent liquidators to investigate the actions of the Company and officeholders if the Company does go into liquidation, which we note has still not been publicly confirmed.”