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The Coventry City Story

Another one of the "Fallen Teams" can they come back? We can but try
Started on 11 November 2016 by T8
Latest Reply on 24 February 2017 by ianbrown
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T8's avatar Group T8
7 yearsEdited
Coventry City FC
Nickname: The Sky Blues
Founded: 1883
Ground: Ricoh Arena
League: EFL League one



CCFC was formed as Singers FC by George Singer; The creator of the Singer Cycle Company, and who lived at the house on the grounds of what is Coundon Court school (my old stomping ground as a child)

Coventry City has been a member of the football League since 1919 and have had one major success in its lifetime by winning the FA Cup in a shock 3-2 win against Tottenham in 1987 and seen as a classic in many modern-day footballing circles.

They spent 34 Consecutive Seasons in the top flight of English football prior to relegation in 2001. Since then 11 seasons in The Championship and now they languish in League One as of 2012.

At the time, it had been 48 years since the club had played in that tier of English football.
Since 2007 the club had been owned by SISU, which at the time came in at the nick of time to stop the club from going into administration. However, the consortium had not been able to prove its worth in investing into the club to help move them forward and back up the leagues. (more concerned about cost cutting and saving money rather than getting a balance between spending money to make money/save in the long term)


“From a personal standpoint, buying a football club especially in the lower leagues you DO NOT expect to be making much of a “in the black” turnover if any, unless you have the money to spend don’t bother buying a club, and even if you do spend it wisely and effectively to help the club move up the leagues and then possibly in the future sell to someone else to make a profit or hopefully start making a profit like more of the bigger English teams.

This is why Coventry is in the place it is now, the owners might sell, but only at the right price. They want to make as much money off of it as possible, get as much back from what they brought it for, however since 2007 to now the worth is not as much as it was then, and who’s fault is that? Only their own. It is why the club is now left in the situation it is unless someone can come in a help save them”



In 2013 the club did go into administration (not surprised) and a bidding war amid four bidders took place over a 2 week period with the victor being Otium Entertainment Group. At Last the club could move out of the hell that was SISU and their lack of money in the first place to even be owning a football club………..

WHAT, no this cant be. The winning bidder for the club is related to Coventry City FC Holdings, which still operates under SISU! So SISU still controls The Club…
The decision was met with anger by Sky Blue supporters and since 2013 it has only gotten worse for the club but they had managed to at least perform at around a mid table level somehow!

2013-14 18th (without the deduction of 10p would have been 9th)
2014-15 17th
2015-16 8th (through the brilliance of the manager and the loan singings he made)
2016-17 currently 18th


Currently Manager-less Coventry have been searching for the man with the task of helping them become stable again and in the near future hopefully get themselves back into the Championship and maybe one day the Premier League once more. But who would take on such a task? A club with 0 money to spend in the market, little to no wage budget to even bring in any free transfers. Once again the loan market would need to be the clubs saving grace like the previous year?

Up steps Chris, the young Coventrian still in his 30’s and completely unknown to the footballing world. A risk yes, but nobody else has had the bottle to apply for the job let alone consider it. A job deemed as a lost cause to many but not this man. A Coventry fan through and through; (even if his second team is Newcastle; as his family came to Coventry in the big Car Manufacturing days of old).

They need a man with the club at his core and Chris decided that “screw it” I can do better than the rest, I can get this club going places! I can but try, I can but give it my best shot, LETS DO THIS.

This is the Coventry City Story
T8's avatar Group T8
7 yearsEdited
UPDATE : 11th Nov 2016

Episode 1

Where to start? What style to play? What formation to use? Assessing the squad and what areas (if we can) improve or add more depth to? It is a headache no man wants or needs, but it is the joy of being manager of Coventry City.

Firstly, what formation can we use to fit around the players we have and what best suits them…
4-2-3-1 Wide was my first choice and second a 4-3-1-2 Narrow as a backup
Adding in a possible starting 11, subs, and then to assess where to try and strengthen.

GK : Charles-Cook
RB: Ricketts
LB: McCann (Loan)
CB: Turnball
CB: Willis
CM: Bigirimana
CM: Gadzhev
LW: Reid
RW: Lameries
AM: Jones
ST: McBean (Loan)

At the start of the season we have injuries galore with Sordell (2 months), Stokes (3months), Rose (5months)

After much deliberation, It was decided that the defence was lacking with a spare RB needed as Ricketts was the only real player to play there and with only two out and out CB in Willis and Turnball (even if Willis can play a RB), more versatility was needed especially as games come thick and fast in the EFL’s and fatigue would become a big factor!

I did have Lewis Page (LB) from West Ham and John Sterry (RB) from Newcastle on loan but found that neither were to the standard needed, plus I had McCann until December as my first-choice LB and Ryan Haynes as second, and Stokes would be back before then. I didn’t need Page and I could do with trimming him off the wage bill. So both loans were terminated.

In came Eugenio Calvarese on a FREE


And as I saw it as to much of an offer to turn down,

Aleix Garcia (2 year loan from Man City)


before the season started. Until any sponsor money came it I couldn’t do much else apart from that.

August

A mixed bag of win, lose and draws saw us pick up 5 points from 5 games and wins in the EFL cup 1st round and a loss in the 2nd with the Paint trophy group game point in between.


No suprise however to see us lying in 19th Place at the end of the month. But as we know the EFL's are always close nit affairs you can jump from 19th to 9th in the blink of an eye!

The Team stayed pretty much the same apart from Tudguy coming in as ST because I just couldn’t find the striker to score any goals and the defence kept leaking them as well and the team was still trying to find it’s feet with the formation and tactics being used. Experimenting with instructions and settings between the whole month trying to work out what the team was suited to utilise to the best of their ability. Eventually at the start of September a system was found and also thank god some sponsor money came in!!
T8's avatar Group T8
7 yearsEdited
Episode 2:

£100,000

I was ecstatic! Right away this got pumped into either wages or a small amount of signing on fee money for anyone.

I thought we need to score some goals.

The team was spreading goals around nicely but chances after chances kept going begging when they should have been putting a game to bed or at least not coming out with a 0-0 or 1-1 draw all the time.

The loan market was dead for anyone wanting to come to Coventry, plus all the decent players from PL/EFL teams were taken.

Up steps 32-year-old Carlton Cole on a 1 year deal half way through the month and was warming up the bench coming on as a sub until he was fit enough to start.


Now I hear you cry why on earth would you sign him. My main thought was his experience.

Not being an out and out goal scoring man his link up play has always been good. Reminds me a bit of Heskey in that respect.

I knew that he would be able to put a few away and hold up the ball for the rest of the team to get involved and help them score a goal or two. Being a big target man and with the team whipping in some crosses I thought he could well be a good addition to the team. With only having:

Tudguy
Sordell (injured until mid Sep)
Aguei (Loan until Jan, didn’t rate him at all but using him as a backup winger mainly)
McBean (loan until Jan)

I thought I need to future proof the team until the end of the season as the midfield section should be able to handle itself until some of the injured players return.

September

8 points from a possible 15 Saw us jump from 19th to 12th, but as before a few bad results and you're right back down there


Skin of the teeth for all games, either could have turned into a loss, draw, or win. With nothing separating the results from turning into either of the 3 possible outcomes had things had gone differently during those games.

Counting ourselves lucky in some cases and not in others. Is this the shape of things to come? Or are we going to fluke our way throughout most of the season in some shape or form!

The team was spreading out the goals, sordell was back from injury and Calvarese had started to replace Ricketts as first choice RB because with like 8 pace he was never going to carry on for long as a RB for this team.

Tudguy = 3
Garcia = 1
Wright (who stared to come in as first choice RM) = 2
Gadzhev = 1

As said previously I had to find the right system to work for the team and this started to gel this month. There was now some sort of consistency within the team

Since there is a lack of depth, no real quality compared to the big guns of the league, only our two CM’s being the best players at our disposal, I decided to take a Leicester approach to football.

Counter, Counter, Counter…. It worked for them last year hey?


As you can see I took no chances. This team needed to be disciplined, know its place, stay organised and stop other teams from being able to play their normal game as quickly as possible. To clear the ball to the fast wingers to chase onto, keep hold of the ball when in possession, and can hit those on the break when needed.

So far it seems to be working. The more they play the system the better they should get, right? right? :/
Episode 3

This squad has a lot of determined players, it is a shame we don’t have the staff to coach them along as well as we could. This is an area that needs to be assessed in the future but for now we just must deal.

We do however have the best medical team in the entire division, which is all well and good if we lose a player or two. We should be able to get them back to health much quicker than any other team!


We lost our director of football Mark Venus (who’s contract was up in the summer and didn’t want to sign a new one anyway) to Brentford but we got a replacement in just as good for less money. WIN!

We also obtained 36K in comp for him so that would go toward more wage allowances as well as games in the paint trophy to see us pick up a cheeky 10k here and there.

October saw the team connect with this new counter attacking system, we were still leaking in goals, and getting a couple of results go our way but the month of October was the most successful thus far!

16 points from 18!!!........Yes you read that right 16 out of 18

As you can see these included a 4-0 drubbing of Rochdale


Goals:

Willis = 1
Lamerias = 1
Cole = 4
Wright = 3
Jones = 2
Stevenson = 1
Garcia = 2

So from being 12th we had jumped to 4th what an amazing month it was! No injuries, everyone doing their part, and Cole showing me the faith I gave in him by coming up with some much needed goals. Topping it off was the manager of the month award which was happily received and with those kind of results I don’t blame it being handed to me!

We can only go from strength to strength now yeah? Or do we have a complete collapse due to the team getting ahead of themselves? Does everyone stay fit and healthy going into Nov then the busy Dec period? Or do we end up with heavy losses as winter starts to set in and bodies become tired and more susceptible to niggles and knocks?
Would love to see Coventry doin well again mate, best of luck!
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Its a struggle I can tell you that!
Episode 4 - November

Oh HELL NO!

Goalkeeper Burge gets injured during a U23 match, Charles-Cook gets injured 4 games later. 4 months and 2 months. Leaving me with 17-year-old Corey Addai as our keeper! This can’t bold well at all. This could destroy the hard work put in during October and throw us straight into the relegation mix.

Frantically looking at loan keepers or even free ones. I don’t want to use some of the wage budget amounted due to prize money and the compensation of Mark Venus the month before just yet but it looks like I have no choice.

I need a backup backup keep anyway in case of situations like this, but I wasn’t planning on having to dive in this quickly into getting one.

Up steps Frenchman Bastein

A decent keeper and good enough for league one. Compared to what I would have had to deal with for at least 2 and a half months it was a no brainer

Bastien vs Addai


I was able to get him on a decent wage so I didn’t lose too much on the wages I was trying to save to try and get a few players in either on loan or on per deals in January.

Matters got even worse when Lameries had a training injury putting him out for 2 months meant that we were without Stokes, Lameries, Rose, Charles-Cook, and Burge all still for a significant amount of time.

As Lameries was being used as a sub for either the wing or CM we were no left with just Bigirimana and Gadzhev (and youngster Stevenson to try fill anything as a sub )to try and cope with the gruelling schedule or just crowbar anyone in during alternate games. The lack in depth in the squad really shows here and as the season progresses could well be our downfall!

Nov results:


5 draws, 1 loss and 1 win, Four league games four draws. It was terrible and we were back down to 6th. Considering we were 4th at the end of October, we were lucky to still be 6th with only 4 points from a possible 12! Imagine where we could have been had we won some or not done as great in October! Story of our season at the moment, draw, draw, draws 
It really could go either way, exciting stuff! Good luck mate!
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Episode 5 : The Christmas Period

It’s the most wonderful time, of the year!

Well kind of, it was a mixed month really 7 out of 12 points in the league and crashed out the FA Cup to Bury. I would have liked to have gotten to a hopeful “big payday” 3rd round game but it wasn’t to be.

Minus the Paint trophy; we can concentrate on the league as much as possible now as I really want to get that promotion place (more likely a playoff place) in the bag.



Goals:
Jones: 1
Agyei: 1
Reid : 1
Gadzhev: 1
Bigirimana: 1
Cole: 2

Finished the month in 5th so we made up some ground by one place from the previous.

During the month I started looking at players to bring in. A few people would be leaving such as Wright and McCann back to their clubs. I would be saving 3k on McCann and I know I could really use that wage kitty, and with having Stokes back I could use him and Haynes for the LB roles.

I could have tried to keep Wright but decided to bring in someone who was better than him to try and strengthen that right hand side as he was the weakest of all players (even if he had been doing ok for us.)

I also took a look at a new CM as I only had four main players, and with two sets of line-ups depending on how fit people were I wanted someone who could either start for the second team and leave me with at least a fresh pair of legs on the bench for every game rather than having to always have the first team players warm the bench or second team players depending on which line-up I chose.

After an extensive look of the free market I found two suitable players who would sign at the start of January

Larsen Toure: 32 years old but I knew he could do a decent job for us


And a blast from CCFC’s past……JAY TABB!


Its 2006 all over again. Also 32 but all rounded player especially for League One so I was happy to get them both on board for 1.3k and 1.2k a week each. So that 3K saved from McCann was put to good use in my opinion on these two players.

What will January bring? more players on a free If I can afford it? more loan signings? I am sure to try my best.. PLAY UP SKY BLUES!
Confident you can secure your place in the Championship with just another push!
Episode 6

Its January and the transfer window is open and as previously in EP5 two players came in at the start of the month.

During the entire month I went looking for players to pan out the squad. I decided that I needed two CB’s as I had only Willis and Turnball with players like Stokes, Ricketts etc who could play there as secondary positions but I already had them allocated as 2nd choice LB and RB.

The loan market was my only option, and as I sold 33-year-old Tudgy to Portsmouth for free I then saved 3.5k in wages, so I needed to bring in some more Strikers.

I only really had Cole, Sordell and Ageyi and the latter was being used as a sub for the first and second team RM roles. I needed at least 2 front men especially as I saw Sordell as surplus to requirements.

I also needed someone I hoped would score more goals up top. We were scoring plenty but I needed a clinical man to see of games as all these draws were doing my head in! (what I really need is top defenders tbh stop leaking in goals)

As the month went on, it took until nearly the end of the transfer window to wrap up all my business and I had gotten everyone I needed and I felt my business was well spent.

3 loans and 1 full contract.

I have basically become a Man City Feeder club!


Cameron Humphreys
and Tosin Adarabioyo as two CB’s
Thierry Ambose up top
and Samed Yesil




All the loan members on £0 wages and Yesil on 2k, so still saving 1k from the Tudgy sale!

Out of 7 games we won 4, drew 2, and lost 1 which isn’t to bad, only problem is 8 points from 15 in the league. It is these draws still. My defence needs a big overhaul in the summer!


It isn’t too bad I guess overall but it is not really what I would call playoff worthy! Only consolation was that we were still getting prize money being in the Paint trophy.

Finished the month in 3rd! The first half of the season gone and I am very happy with the way the players have played and how far we have come with such limitations at the club
Tosin Adarabioyo was an FM16 hero for me for all clubs in League 1 & 2, good signing.
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Episode 7 : into Feb we go

Let’s just get straight into it shall we? Short and sweet for this episode

Everyone is fit again to play football no injuries or nothing! It’s like Christmas came late for me!
5 League games: 3 wins 2 losses and out of the paint trophy.

Goals from:

Toure: 1
Garcia: 3
Ambrose: 2
Jones: 1
Yesil: 1
Gadzhev: 1




Not much apart from that has happened really. Just progressed through the games and hoped for the best. Finished the month in 5th.

I am starting to rue all these draws we get looking at the table. We would be top otherwise if we had only gotten that quality to see games out and not let in to many goals. Frustrating, but I can’t complain being in 5th really with the team I have compared to everyone else.
Episode 8 : mad as a March Hare

I am going mad as a march hare! 18 points up for grabs

in a month where we had 5 games which will take us to having 6 games left.

After the first 4 games of the month I was less than happy..1 win 2 draws and a loss!

38 games gone and look how tight it is. Also see what I mean about the draws?


The rest of the games during the month didn’t bold much beter.

2 more draws after that…from 18 points we managed 7!!!! Bloody 7. It is still anyone’s game but it is getting seriously close now to making at least a playoff place!

At the end of march we were still 5th!



In other news I spent HOURS looking at different nations, teams, players they released all by myself. Doing my own scouting without using actual scouts as I basically have done.

I found what I believe is a little gem called Mohamed Boateng. A re-gen from Africa at the right to dream academy.

I got him in for free as he wasn’t on a contract and I think he was worth a punt and just see what happens. I could be onto a winner.


So...6 games left! expect it to all hit the fan in EP9!
Keep pushing man, youre not too far away from the Play Offs!
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