Coventry handed eviction notice by new Coventry Building Society Arena owners

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Coventry have been handed an eviction notice by the new owners of the Coventry Building Society Arena.

Frasers Group, owned by former Newcastle owner Mike Ashley, took over the stadium in November and the Sky Blues have been asked to leave.

The Sky Bet Championship club are next due to play at home against Swansea on December 17.

“Coventry City can confirm that it received an eviction notice from Frasers Group, new owners of the Coventry Building Society Arena, on Friday afternoon,” a club statement read.

“Following the Frasers Group acquisition of the stadium from administrators, Coventry City have been told that we must agree a new licence to play at the Arena.

“We were surprised to learn of this intention by Frasers Group, given that discussions with Coventry City prior to the completion of their purchase of the Arena led us to understand the existing terms would continue unchanged with Frasers Group as the new owners of the Arena.

“Coventry City Football Club has an existing long-term licence to play at the Arena, which was agreed in March 2021 to run until 2031.

“Frasers Group have said they would negotiate for beyond May 2023, but this leaves us without the security and certainty that our current deal provides to us and our fans.

“To confirm, Coventry City are happy to continue under the terms of the current licence which we already have in place to play at the Arena.

“Following Frasers Group’s purchase of the Arena, one of the great assets of the city of Coventry, they stated they were ‘looking forward to working with Coventry City Football Club’.

“Coventry City hope that they will act on those words for the good of the Arena, the football club, our fans and the city and community that they are now part of.”

Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games – Day One
The Commonwealth Games Rugby Sevens tournament forced Coventry to play seven of their first eight games this season away from home (Mike Egerton/PA)

A statement to the PA news agency read: “Frasers has, throughout all its involvement with the stadium, been supportive of securing the long-term future of CCFC playing its games at the stadium. This position remains unchanged.

“Prior to acquiring the stadium, Frasers issued a new licence mirroring the terms CCFC had agreed with the previous owners. However, CCFC chose not to sign it at that time.

“A revised proposal, together with a new licence, has been issued to CCFC and will secure the immediate future of CCFC at the stadium.

“Signing the licence would allow for more detailed discussions to take place about CCFC’s long-term arrangements at the stadium, including to accommodate a number of requests which were raised by CCFC.

“Frasers looks forward to working with the club to host the upcoming games.”

Watford v Coventry City – Sky Bet Championship – Vicarage Road
Coventry boss Mark Robins has managed the club in difficult times. (Steven Paston/PA)

The deal involves clearing all of the club’s current debts and Coventry had been planning to make an equity bid to buy the stadium, following the administration of former owners Wasps but lost out to Ashley.

It is the latest stadium issue the Sky Blues have suffered with the club having played in Northampton for a year in 2013-14 and spent two seasons at St Andrew’s in Birmingham until 2021.

They also played seven of their first eight games away from home this season after the Commonwealth Games Rugby Sevens tournament damaged the pitch.

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