Coventry City F.C.

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Coventry City FC
Coventry City F.C. logo.png
Full nameCoventry City Football Club
Nickname(s)The Sky Blues
Founded13 August 1883; 138 years ago (1883-08-13)
(as Singers F.C.)
GroundCoventry Building Society Arena
OwnerJoy Seppala (Otium Entertainment Group)
ChairmanTim Fisher
ManagerMark Robins
LeagueEFL Championship
2021–22EFL Championship, 12th of 24
WebsiteClub website
Current season

Coventry City Football Club is a professional association football club based in Coventry, West Midlands, England. The team currently compete in the Championship, the second tier of the English football league system. The club play at the 32,609 capacity Coventry Building Society Arena (or CBS Arena). The club is nicknamed the Sky Blues because of the colour of their home strip. From 1899 to 2005, Coventry City played at Highfield Road. The 32,609-capacity Coventry Building Society Arena (named the Ricoh Arena until 2021) was opened in August 2005 to replace Highfield Road.

Coventry City formed as Singers F.C. in 1883 following a general meeting of the Singer Factory Gentleman's club. They adopted their current name in 1898 and joined the Southern League in 1908, before being elected into the Football League in 1919. Relegated in 1925, they returned to the Second Division as champions of the Third Division South and Third Division South Cup winners in 1935–36. Relegated in 1952, they won promotion in the inaugural Fourth Division season in 1958–59. Coventry reached the First Division after winning the Third Division title in 1963–64 and the Second Division title in 1966–67 under the management of Jimmy Hill. In the 1970–71 season, the team competed in the European Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, reaching the second round. Despite beating Bayern Munich 2–1 in the home leg, they had lost 6–1 in the first leg in Germany, and thus were eliminated.

Coventry's only period in the top division to date lasted 34 consecutive years between 1967 and 2001, and they were inaugural members of the Premier League in 1992. They won the FA Cup in 1987, the club's only major trophy, when they beat Tottenham Hotspur 3–2. They experienced further relegations in 2012 and 2017, though did manage to also win the EFL Trophy in 2017. Coventry returned to Wembley in 2018, beating Exeter City in the League Two play-off final. Manager Mark Robins built on this success guiding the Sky Blues to 8th in League One the next season and then led the club to promotion back to the EFL Championship as League One champions in 2020. In their first season back in the Championship, Robins guided the Sky Blues to a 16th-placed finish, 12 points clear of relegation. After occupying the play-off places for a large amount of the 2021–22 season, Coventry achieved a 12th-placed finish in its second season back in the Championship. This was the club's highest league finish in 16 years.

History in brief

Chart of historic table positions of Coventry City in the Football League.
  • 1883 – The club is founded by employees of Singer, the cycle firm, with William Stanley one of the leading lights.
  • 1898 – The club's name is changed from Singers F.C. to Coventry City.
  • 1899 – The club move to Highfield Road following stints at Dowells Field and Stoke Road.
  • 1901 – The club suffer their worst ever defeat with an 11–2 loss against Worcester-based Berwick Rangers in the qualifying round of the FA Cup.
  • 1919 – The club are voted into the Football League, where they have remained ever since.
  • 1928 – In February, and with Coventry struggling near the foot of Division Three South, the club's worst ever attendance is recorded. Only 2,059 turn up for the match against Crystal Palace.
  • 1932 – Centre-forward Clarrie Bourton heads the Football League scoring lists with 49 goals. The following season he scored 40 goals.
  • 1934 – City record their biggest ever victory - a 9–0 league drubbing of Bristol City.
  • 1936 – Coventry City win the Third Division South championship after a nail-biting final day 2–1 victory over Torquay United and return to Division Two after eleven years in the lower division.
  • 1958 – Goalkeeper Alf Wood becomes the oldest player to start a game for the club, which this year was a founding member of Division Four (now Football League Two). He played against Plymouth Argyle in the FA Cup aged 43 years and 207 days.
  • 1959 - Coventry City finish 2nd to Win Promotion back to Division 3 at the first attempt under Manager Billy Frith.
  • 1961 – Former Fulham player and PFA chairman Jimmy Hill is appointed manager following an embarrassing FA Cup defeat at home to non-league King's Lynn.
  • 1964Jimmy Hill guides Coventry to promotion from Division Three as champions after a final day 1–0 victory over Colchester United.
  • 1967 – Coventry City promoted as Second Division champions to the top flight for the first time in their history. This made manager Jimmy Hill, who would go on to enjoy a successful career as a TV presenter, a legend at the club. Coventry's record attendance was also set in this year – officially recorded as 51,455 (although many people who were at that game suggest the attendance was a lot higher, possibly much over 60,000), against Wolverhampton Wanderers, the team that finished a close second to Coventry at the top of the table.
  • 1970 – Under Noel Cantwell, Coventry finish 6th in the First Division, their highest League placing. Coventry qualify for the European Fairs Cup but lost 7–3 on aggregate in the second round to Bayern Munich, despite winning the second leg 2–1 at Highfield Road.
  • 1977 – Coventry City escaped relegation after a 2–2 draw with Bristol City, who also escaped relegation. The result of this game relegated Sunderland, which caused allegations of match fixing over the outcome of the match due to the result of the Sunderland game being relayed to Coventry City and Bristol City players on the stadium screen before their game had finished.[citation needed]
  • 1978 – The strike partnership of Ian Wallace and Mick Ferguson helped the Sky Blues finish in seventh position in the First Division, their second-highest ever final league placing, but fractionally missing out on a UEFA Cup place.
Coventry City playing against Oxford United at Highfield Road on 13 February 1982
  • 1981 – The club reaches the League Cup semi-final but are denied their first Wembley appearance by West Ham United, despite being 3–2 ahead after the first leg. Highfield Road becomes England's first all-seater stadium.
  • 1987 – The Sky Blues won the FA Cup, beating Tottenham Hotspur in the final. It is their only major trophy to date. They were runners-up to Everton in August in the Charity Shield. Coventry also won the FA Youth Cup in this year.
  • 1989 – Coventry were defeated by non-league Sutton United in the FA Cup Third Round, only 19 months after lifting the trophy. However, their impressive league form meant they equalled their second-highest ever end of season placing, finishing seventh once more.
  • 1990 – Coventry reached the League Cup semi-final for the second time, but were narrowly defeated over two legs by eventual winners Nottingham Forest.
  • 1998 – The club reached the FA Cup quarter-final but were denied a semi-final appearance as Sheffield United (a division below them) won the replay at Bramall Lane on penalties. They also attained their highest Premier League finish of 11th position. Dion Dublin earned the top scorer award, the only one for the club and the second of two players for clubs which never made the top three in the League.
  • 2001 – Coventry relegated from the Premier League after 34 years in the first tier. At the time, only Liverpool, Everton and Arsenal could boast longer tenures in the top flight.
  • 2004 – The club's football academy, based in southeast Coventry at The Alan Higgs Centre, owned by the Alan Higgs Centre Trust, was opened in September 2004.
  • 2005 – Coventry relocated to the 32,609 seat Ricoh Arena after 106 years at Highfield Road. The club's last game at Highfield Road stadium results in a 6–2 win over Midlands rivals Derby County in front of a sell-out 22,777 crowd.
  • 2007 – Coventry narrowly avoided administration when Ray Ranson and London-based hedge fund SISU Capital Limited, took over the club with twenty minutes to spare.
  • 2008 – The club celebrated its 125th anniversary. It avoided relegation to League One despite having been beaten 4–1 at Charlton on the final day of the season.
  • 2009 – The first ever complete sell-out of the Ricoh Arena was announced for the FA Cup quarter-final match against Chelsea on 7 March 2009, which Chelsea won 2–0 in front of a crowd of 31,407.
  • 2012 – Coventry are relegated to League One, the third tier in English Football, for the first time in 48 years.
  • 2013 – The club owners, SISU, place a non-operating subsidiary of the club, which owns no financial assets and has no employee on or off the pitch, into administration. The club moved all staff out of the Ricoh Arena and the administrator accepted a bid from the Otium Entertainment Group, a company registered by three ex-Sky Blues directors Ken Dulieu, Onye Igwe and Leonard Brody. The club agrees to play future home matches at Sixfields Stadium, Northampton, a 70-mile round-trip from the Ricoh. Following two adjournments a creditors meeting in August rejected a Company Voluntary Arrangement put forward by the administrator.
  • 2014 – The club return to the Ricoh Arena and suffer a shock FA Cup First round defeat at the hands of Worcester City.
  • 2016 – Protests from Coventry City supporters against owners SISU reach an all-time high, with demonstrations during matches against Charlton Athletic and Sheffield United receiving widespread press attention. A petition calling for SISU to sell up and leave was set up in September 2016 and has so far been signed by nearly 20,000 individuals, including several former Coventry City players and managers. FA chairman Greg Clarke described Coventry's situation as "a very sad case", a sentiment later echoed by caretaker manager Mark Venus's description of "a sorry football club".
  • 2017 – Coventry reach Wembley for the first time in 30 years by defeating Wycombe Wanderers in the semi-final of the EFL Trophy. They go on to win the final against Oxford United to lift their first trophy since 1987's FA Cup victory. But that result is in obvious contrast with the club's season as a whole, with Coventry being relegated to EFL League Two, their first time in the fourth tier of English football since 1959.
  • 2018 – The club achieve a top-six finish for the first time since 1969–70, and are promoted via the League Two play-offs to League One, their first promotion from any tier since 1967.
  • 2019 – After failing to reach an agreement with Ricoh Arena owners Wasps RFC, the club commits to a groundsharing agreement with Birmingham City, playing their home fixtures at St Andrew's (a 38-mile round-trip from Coventry), again much to the chagrin of the supporters.
  • 2020 – Coventry were crowned Champions of EFL League One after an Extraordinary General Meeting between all 23 League One clubs, which saw the season ended 9 games early, ruled that the final table would be calculated on a points per game (PPG) basis.
  • 2021 – The club began life back in EFL Championship for the first time in 9 years. In March 2021, The club announced that they will return to the Coventry Building Society Arena in August 2021 on a 10-year deal after spending the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons playing home matches in Birmingham. On Saturday 8 May, Coventry beat Millwall 6–1 to secure a 16th-placed finish in the Championship, their best league finish in 15 years. On 7 August 2021, Coventry City played Nottingham Forest at the Coventry Building Society Arena in the club's first game back at the ground in 2 years and their first Championship game in Coventry since 2012 in front of an attendance of 20,843, City won the game 2-1 after a 96th-minute injury-time winner from Kyle McFadzean.

Playing kit


Coventry's home shirts are either completely or predominately sky blue. However, in past seasons, different 'home colours' were worn. For example, in 1889, the then Singers FC wore pink and blue halved shirts (mirroring the corporate colours of Singers Motors). Furthermore, in the 1890s, black and red were the club's colours. In the early 1920s, the club wore red and green (to reflect the colours of the city crest). Sky blue was first used by Coventry in 1898 and the theme was used until 1922. Variations of blue and white were then used until the 1960s and the beginning of the 'sky blue revolution'. The colour made its return in 1962 thanks to the then manager, Jimmy Hill. To mark the 125th year of the club, Coventry wore a special brown shirt in the last home game of the 2008–09 season against Watford, having first worn a chocolate brown away kit in 1978. This kit has been cited by some as the worst in English football history, but also has an iconic status with some fans.

In 2012, in the Third round FA Cup tie versus Southampton, the team wore a commemorative blue and white striped kit, marking the 25th anniversary of the club winning the FA Cup in 1987. The strip was worn again in January 2013 for Coventry's 3rd round FA Cup fixture with Tottenham Hotspur, whom they beat in the 1987 final. In 2019, Coventry City announced a new third kit in black and white honouring the city's connection with 2 Tone Records on the 40th anniversary of the record label.

Kit maker and sponsorship

Since the 2019–20 season, the kit is made by Hummel. The home, away and third kit is sponsored by BoyleSports.

The first official kit manufacture deal came in 1974 when Umbro signed a deal with the club. Coventry also had the first kit sponsorship deal in the football league, when Jimmy Hill, then Chairman of the club, negotiated a deal with Talbot, who manufactured cars in the city.

Period Kit manufacturer Shirt sponsor Shorts sponsor
1974–75 Umbro None None or N/A
1975–80 Admiral Sportswear
1980–81 Talbot
1981–83 Talbot Sports
1983–84 Umbro Tallon
1984–85 Glazepta
1985–86 Elliots
1986–87 Triple S Sport Granada Bingo
1987–88 Hummel
1988–89 None
1989–92 Asics Peugeot
1992–94 Ribero
1994–96 Pony International
1996–97 Le Coq Sportif
1997–99 Subaru


1999–2004 In House Manufacturer (CCFC Leisure)
2004–05 [email protected]
2005–06 Cassidy Group
2006–10 Puma
2010–13 City Link
2013–14 Grace Medical Fund (charity partner)
2014–15 Allsopp & Allsopp
2015–18 Nike
2018–19 Midrepro
2019–20 Hummel International Allsopp & Allsopp The Exams Office
2020–21 BoyleSports (front), Jingltree (back) G&R Scaffolding (home), SIMIAN Aspects Training (away)
2021- BoyleSports (front), XL Motors (back)



106 years at Highfield Road

Coventry City played at Highfield Road between 1899 and 2005

Coventry City began playing at the Highfield Road stadium in 1899 within the Hillfields district of the city, although the club did not buy the freehold to the site until 1937. The ground had an interesting history. In 1940 the main stand which backed onto terraced houses in Mowbray Street was bombed by the Luftwaffe. Heavy turnstiles from the ground and gas meters from houses in Mowbray Street were discovered in Gosford Park, some 500 metres away.

The record crowd at the ground was on 29 April 1967 when 51,455 watched the Second Division title decider against Wolverhampton Wanderers. This was over 6,000 more than the previous record set against Aston Villa in 1938. Many people who were at that game suggest the attendance was a lot higher, possibly over 60,000. Supporters climbed onto the roofs of the stands and up the floodlights.[citation needed]

In 1968, the main stand burnt down and its replacement was built within four months.

In 1981, Highfield Road was converted into England's first-ever all-seater stadium with a capacity of around 24,500, which many criticised as killing the atmosphere of the ground. Some seats were removed a few years later. It had been gradually upgraded since then, with the final phase of work being completed in the mid-1990s, including two fully enclosed corners, providing some much-needed modernity. On 30 April 2005, the final game played at the stadium was against Midlands rivals Derby County; Coventry won 6–2. The stadium was subsequently demolished and replaced by a housing development.

Coventry Building Society Arena

Coventry Building Society Arena

For the 2005–06 season, Coventry City moved to the new 32,609-capacity Coventry Building Society Arena (then named the Ricoh Arena) after 106 years at Highfield Road. In 1998, the club had decided that it was time to relocate to a new stadium in the Rowleys Green area of the city, 3+12 miles (5.6 km) north of the city centre and close to junction 3 of the M6 motorway. The original plan was for a state-of-the-art, 45,000-seater multipurpose stadium with removable pitch and retractable roof. It was due to be ready for the 2001–02 season and was touted to be one of the finest and most advanced stadiums in Europe. However, the club's subsequent relegation, financial problems, financier/contractor withdrawals, and England's failure to secure the 2006 World Cup competition led to a radical redesign. The resulting stadium was built to a standard bowl design with steep stands in line with several other new stadia built during that period. It has excellent acoustics and has been used to host several major rock concerts.

Despite initiating the project and being the principal attraction there, Coventry City's financial situation means that it no longer owned the stadium and must pay rent to use it; this appeared to raise concerns over the managing of the club's finances by previous club officials, because in 2001 the club was the fourth-longest serving club in the top flight of English football. The stadium naming rights were originally sold to Jaguar Cars, which has strong links with Coventry. Jaguar pulled out of the project on 16 December 2004 and a new major sponsor was needed. A £10 million deal, which included naming rights, was signed and electronics manufacturer Ricoh became the new chief sponsor for the stadium. The project was funded largely by Coventry City Council and the (Alan Edward) Higgs Charity (of which former CCFC and ACL director the late Sir Derek Higgs was a trustee), and includes shopping facilities, a casino, exhibition halls and a concert venue.

At the beginning of the 2005–06 season, construction delays at the ground forced Coventry City to play their first three games of the season away and postpone their home games. On Saturday 20 August 2005, City hosted Queens Park Rangers in the first-ever game at the Ricoh Arena; Coventry won the game 3–0. On 28 July 2011, a statue of Jimmy Hill was installed at the main entrance to the Ricoh Arena, with Hill appearing in person to unveil it.


Rent disputes caused Coventry City to play the 2013–14 season at Sixfields Stadium in Northampton

On 3 May 2013, Coventry City put a contingency plan in place to play elsewhere for the 2013–14 season. It was argued by the club that this was due to ACL (Arena Coventry Limited), which managed the stadium, being unwilling to negotiate with the club to agree to a new lease. However, that led to the local newspaper, the Coventry Telegraph, starting a petition to stop Coventry City from playing outside of Coventry. It was sent to all 72 clubs in the Football League and Football League chairman Greg Clarke. In May 2013, managing director Tim Fisher set a plan of building a new stadium within the city over the next three years, and ground-sharing whilst the new ground was being built. In June 2013, ACL made an offer that Coventry City F.C. could play at the Ricoh Arena rent free while the club was in administration.

It was believed that Coventry City might ground-share with Walsall at the Bescot Stadium or attempt to stay at the Ricoh Arena, following the appointment of new owners. However, by July 2013, the Walsall rumours were denied and the club ground-shared at Northampton Town's Sixfields Stadium – a venue that had less than a quarter the capacity of the Ricoh Arena, and involved a round-trip of 70 miles (110 km). That arrangement was due to continue until at least 2016. Plans for the club to play its home matches outside of the city were met with strong opposition, and led to protests by Coventry fans. Member of parliament for Coventry South, Jim Cunningham, described the move as "a disgrace".

Return to the Coventry Building Society Arena

On 21 August 2014 it was announced that an agreement had been reached allowing the club to return to the Ricoh Arena for the next two years with the option of another two years. Coventry City's first home game back at the Ricoh Arena was played against Gillingham on 5 September 2014. Steve Waggott, who led the negotiations for the club, said: "We are delighted to get this deal done and I am sure every supporter of Coventry City will be thrilled with the news." City won their first match back at the Ricoh Arena 1–0 with Frank Nouble scoring the only goal of the match in front of 27,306 supporters.

The return followed a social media campaign entitled #bringCityhome by the Coventry Telegraph and a protest march by the Sky Blue Trust supporters' group. The campaign drew praise from national media and figures within the football world. It was short-listed at the 2014 British Press Awards in the "Campaign of the Year" category.

Because the tenancy agreement with Wasps was to expire in August 2018, it was reported in November 2015 that there would be a relocation to another site within the city. However it was later confirmed that Coventry City would remain at the Ricoh Arena for another year.

In May 2016 the Coventry Telegraph broke the news that the club had drawn up plans with Coventry Rugby Club for a ground-share arrangement at a redeveloped Butts Park Arena. That was eventually denied by Rugby Club chairman Jon Sharp, who said there could be no deal with the football club while it was still owned by SISU.

St Andrew's

On 7 June 2019 it was reported that talks between SISU and Wasps had again broken down meaning that Coventry would have to play their 2019–20 home matches at Birmingham City's St Andrew's ground.

The club had the option to spend a further two seasons away from Coventry and remained at St Andrew's for the 2020–21 season. The club returned to the Ricoh Arena in August 2021, ending the ground-share agreement between Coventry and Birmingham.

New Stadium at the University of Warwick and second return to Coventry

In July 2020, the club confirmed that they had commenced a partnership with the University of Warwick which would see land provided for a new stadium.

In March 2021, the club announced that they had secured a ten-year agreement to return to the Ricoh Arena from the start of the 2021–22 season. The deal, described by the club's owners as "the best the club has had in terms of commercial revenue" during their time at the stadium, would not affect the longer-term goal of constructing a new stadium. The new deal also includes a seven-year break clause should the club require it.

On 5 May 2021, it was announced that the Ricoh Arena would be renamed for the first time, when it will become the Coventry Building Society Arena. The name change will come into effect in July 2021 as a part of a 10-year naming rights deal with the building society.

On 8 August 2021, Coventry City played Nottingham Forest at the Coventry Building Society Arena in the club's first game back at the ground in 2 years and their first Championship game in Coventry since 2012. They won the match 2-1. On 16 September 2021, Coventry City owner Joy Seppala told the BBC the club remained "firmly committed" to a new stadium, planned for a site owned by the University of Warwick.


Former Players' Association

In February 2007 a Former Players' Association was launched. Set up by club historian and statistician Jim Brown, former 1980s player Kirk Stephens and a committee of volunteers, its aim was to bring former players of the club together and cherish their memories. To qualify for membership players have to have made at least one first-team competitive appearance for the club or been a manager.

Around 50 former stars of the club attended the launch including Coventry City legends George Hudson, Cyrille Regis, Charlie Timmins and Bill Glazier. The association's first newsletter was published in autumn 2007 and a website launched. The launch of 2007 was followed by subsequent Legends' Days. The 2009 event, held at the home game against Doncaster Rovers was attended by 43 former players including the first visit to Coventry for many years of Roy Barry and Dave Clements. In March 2012 the membership had increased past the 200 mark with former captain Terry Yorath inducted as the 200th member at the 2012 Legends' Day.[citation needed]

Legends’ Day has become an almost permanent fixture amongst Coventry supporters. Legends’ Day has been held almost every year since the Inaugural Event. The only exceptions being in 2014 when the club were exiled playing home games in Northampton and in 2020 and 2021 after fans were shut out of stadiums as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Sky Blue Trust

The Sky Blue Trust is a supporters' trust for Coventry City F.C.; it was founded in 2003 as part of a national initiative under the auspices of the umbrella group, Supporters Direct. The Sky Blue Trust, like trusts at other clubs, is a legally based, independent, democratic supporters' group with membership open to all. One of the Sky Blue Trust's greatest achievements was raising funds to save the football club's Youth Academy which was threatened with closure.[citation needed] By 2009/2010, however, the trust had become moribund. Given the ongoing financial uncertainty at Coventry City, the trust was re-launched in the summer of 2012. A new board for the trust was elected and from having less than 20 members, the trust grew to over 700 within three months, including TV pundit John McCririck.[citation needed] The key aim of the Sky Blue Trust is to obtain a financial stake in Coventry City F.C. and have at least one democratically elected trust member on the club's board, meaning that supporters have a direct say in the running of the club.

'SISU Out' protesters

In August 2011, after Coventry City fans became tired of cost-cutting by SISU, Coventry fans started to protest for the removal of SISU. Protests took place at the Jimmy Hill Statue at the Ricoh Arena before games but limited numbers turned out. However, after these games, the number of protesters grew and so did the number of banners. After protesting near the rear entrance, the fans moved into the lobby and start chanting "SISU OUT" at which point a large number of "security response guards" moved in to remove the protesters.

Another protest was staged on 15 October 2016 as Coventry and Charlton Athletic fans threw hundreds of plastic toy pigs onto the pitch during a 3–0 loss for Coventry. Play was stopped for around 5 minutes. This protest was a joint effort between Coventry and Charlton fans against their respective owners.

On 15 December 2016, the televised match between Coventry and Sheffield United was temporarily halted after 86 minutes due to on-field protests, once again against owners SISU. The atmosphere of the match was dominated by Coventry supporters whistling loudly and chanting anti-SISU protests in the stands throughout the entire 90 minutes.

There were protests when Coventry played Northampton Town away on 28 January 2017, when flares were thrown onto the pitch as well as pitch invasions. The play was stopped several times and the players were removed from the field of play twice.

There were further protests against Millwall, as many tennis balls were thrown onto the pitch to halt play, on 4 February 2017 at the Ricoh Arena.

Sky Blue anthem

The words to the club's song were written in 1962 by Team Manager Jimmy Hill and Director John Camkin; The words being set to the tune of the Eton Boating Song. It was launched at the home game with Colchester on 22 December 1962 (a match abandoned at half-time because of fog) with the words printed in the programme. It quickly became popular with supporters during the epic FA Cup run in 1963 when the then Third Division team reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup before losing to eventual winners Manchester United:

Original Words:
Let's all sing together
Play up, Sky Blues
While we sing together
We will never lose
Proud, Posh or Cobblers
Oysters or anyone
They shan't defeat us
We'll fight till the game is won!
City! City! City!

Current Words:
Let's all sing together
Play up, Sky Blues
While we sing together
We will never lose
Tottenham or Chelsea
United or anyone
They shan't defeat us
We'll fight till the game is won!
City! City! City!


Leicester City are considered Coventry City's main rival and the two clubs compete the M69 Derby. However, largely due to the clubs' differing fortunes meetings between the two have been rare in recent years; the two clubs have not played each other since 2012.

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s and to the turn of the millennium, Aston Villa were considered Coventry's main rivals as they continually competed against each other in the First Division and then the Premier League. The two clubs however have not met since Coventry's relegation from the Premier League in 2001.

Local rivalries also exist with Wolverhampton Wanderers, West Bromwich Albion and Walsall but these are much less fierce than the ones with Leicester and Villa.

A local rivalry also exists with Birmingham City, however the ground share agreement at St Andrew's between 2019 and 2021 - which effectively spared Coventry from being expelled from the EFL - has led to friendlier relations between the two clubs.

The club has an unusual long-distance rivalry with North-East side Sunderland, which stems back to the end of the 1976–77 season, when Coventry, Sunderland and Bristol City were all battling against relegation from Division One on the final day of the season. With Coventry and Bristol City facing each other at Highfield Road, Jimmy Hill, Coventry's chairman at the time, delayed the kick-off of the match by 15 minutes due to ‘crowd congestion’. Sunderland, who were playing away to Everton at the same time, lost 2-0, and with 15 minutes left to play, Coventry and Bristol City effectively played out a 2–2 draw, sparing them both from relegation and sending Sunderland down instead. Hill was charged with misconduct by The FA, but the result was allowed to stand and Sunderland were controversially relegated. No love has been lost between the two clubs since and the rivalry re-intensified as the two clubs competed for promotion from League One together in 2018–19 and 2019–20. In 2018–19 crowd trouble marred the meetings between the two at The Ricoh Arena and The Stadium of Light leading to numerous arrests among both sets of fans.

Current players

First team squad

As of 11 May 2022

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK England ENG Simon Moore
4 DF Scotland SCO Michael Rose
5 DF England ENG Kyle McFadzean
6 MF Scotland SCO Liam Kelly (captain)
8 MF England ENG Jamie Allen
9 FW England ENG Martyn Waghorn
10 MF England ENG Callum O'Hare
13 GK England ENG Ben Wilson
14 MF England ENG Ben Sheaf
15 DF Scotland SCO Dominic Hyam
17 FW Sweden SWE Viktor Gyökeres
No. Pos. Nation Player
19 FW England ENG Tyler Walker
20 DF England ENG Todd Kane
22 DF Scotland SCO Josh Reid
23 DF England ENG Fankaty Dabo
24 FW England ENG Matt Godden
27 DF England ENG Jake Bidwell
28 MF England ENG Josh Eccles
30 FW Portugal POR Fábio Tavares
38 MF Netherlands NED Gustavo Hamer
FW England ENG Danny Cashman

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
29 DF France FRA Julien Dacosta (on loan at Portimonense until 30 June 2022)
32 MF Scotland SCO Jack Burroughs (on loan at Ross County until 30 June 2022)
35 DF England ENG Declan Drysdale (on loan at Ross County until 30 June 2022)
MF Germany GER Marcel Hilßner (on loan at FSV Zwickau until 30 June 2022)

Under-23 squad

As of 11 May 2022

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
31 GK England ENG Tom Billson
34 MF Republic of Ireland IRL Ricardo Dinanga
36 MF Wales WAL Ryan Howley
41 FW England ENG Will Bapaga
42 DF Scotland SCO George Burroughs
43 MF Romania ROU Marco Rus
No. Pos. Nation Player
44 GK Wales WAL Cian Tyler
45 MF England ENG Aidan Finnegan
47 FW England ENG Harrison Nee
50 DF Republic of Ireland IRL Jay McGrath
DF Republic of Ireland IRL Abel Alabi

Out on loan

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
46 DF England ENG Blaine Rowe (on loan at Ayr United until 31 May 2022)

Under-18 squad

As of 21 May 2021

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
GK England ENG Luke Bell
GK England ENG Charlie Callaghan
DF England ENG Rio Grant
DF Republic of Ireland IRL Fionn O'Brien
DF England ENG Malakai Reeve
DF England ENG Talon Shephard
DF England ENG Joe Wynne
DF England ENG Shay Young
MF England ENG Oliver Berry
No. Pos. Nation Player
MF England ENG Craig Hewitt
MF England ENG Charlie Manners
MF England ENG Reece Massey
MF England ENG Lewys McCafferty
FW Austria AUT Evan Eghosa
FW England ENG Justin Obikwu
FW England ENG Samuel Rodber
FW England ENG Bradley Stretton

Backroom staff and club officials

Name Position
Mark Robins Manager
Adi Viveash Assistant Manager
Dennis Lawrence First Team Coach
Aled Williams Goalkeeping Coach
Luke Tisdale Under 23s Head Coach
John Dempster Under 18s Coach
Daniel Bolas Academy Manager
Paul Godfrey Head of Medical
Dr Prithish Narayan Club Doctor
Liam Stanley Assistant Physiotherapist
Marcus Drake Soft Tissue Therapist
Adam Hearn Head of Sports Science
Andy Young Senior Fitness Coach
Paul Travis Performance Analyst
Mike Reid Head of Football Operations
Ben Kilby Football Operations
Chris Badlan Head of Recruitment
Ray Gooding Scout (Midlands Region)
Chris Marsh Kitman
Name Position
Joy Seppala Owner (SISU)
Tim Fisher Chairman
David Boddy Chief Executive
David Busst Head of Sky Blues
in the Community
Tynan Scope Commercial Manager
Jim Brown Club Historian

Seasons, awards and honours

Season Review
& Statistics
Level Pos. Player of the Year Club Captain Top Goalscorer Most Appearances Other
1958–1959 season 4 2nd (24) not awarded England George Curtis England Ray Straw 30 England Roy Kirk 48 Football League Fourth Division Runners-up
1959–1960 season 3 5th (24) England George Curtis England Ray Straw 21 South Africa Arthur Lightening 48 Southern Professional Floodlit Cup Winners
1960–1961 season 3 15th (24) England George Curtis England Ray Straw 20 England George Curtis 51
1961–1962 season 3 14th (24) England George Curtis England Mike Dixon 12 England George Curtis 49
1962–1963 season 3 4th (24) England George Curtis England Terry Bly 29 England George Curtis 56
1963–1964 season 3 1st (24) England George Curtis England George Hudson 28 England George Curtis 50
Wales Ronnie Rees 50
Football League Third Division Champions
1964–1965 season 2 10th (22) England George Curtis England George Hudson 24 England George Curtis 46
Wales Ronnie Rees 46
1965–1966 season 2 3rd (22) England George Curtis England George Hudson 17 England George Curtis 50
1966–1967 season 2 1st (22) England George Curtis England Bobby Gould 25 England George Curtis 46 Football League Second Division Champions
1967–1968 season 1 20th (22) England Ernie Machin England George Curtis Wales Ronnie Rees 9 England Ernie Machin 44 FA Youth Cup Runners-up
1968–1969 season 1 20th (22) England Bill Glazier England George Curtis England Ernie Hunt 13 England Bill Glazier 49
1969–1970 season 1 6th (22) Scotland Neil Martin Scotland Roy Barry Scotland Neil Martin 15 England Mick Coop 44 FA Youth Cup Runners-up
1970–1971 season 1 10th (22) Scotland Willie Carr Scotland Neil Martin England Ernie Hunt 13
Scotland Neil Martin 13
England Jeff Blockley 52 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup Second round;
BBC Goal of the Season: England Ernie Hunt
1971–1972 season 1 18th (22) England Ernie Hunt Scotland Roy Barry England Ernie Hunt 12 Scotland Willie Carr 45
England Wilf Smith 45
Texaco Cup Second round
1972–1973 season 1 19th (22) Scotland Willie Carr Scotland Roy Barry Scotland Brian Alderson 17 England Mick Coop 48 Texaco Cup First round
1973–1974 season 1 16th (22) England Bill Glazier England John Craven Scotland Brian Alderson 15 Republic of Ireland Jimmy Holmes 53
Scotland Tommy Hutchison 53
Texaco Cup First round
1974–1975 season 1 14th (22) England Graham Oakey England John Craven Scotland Brian Alderson 8
England David Cross 8
Scotland Tommy Hutchison 46
1975–1976 season 1 14th (22) Scotland Tommy Hutchison England John Craven England David Cross 16 England Mick Coop 47
Scotland Tommy Hutchison 47
1976–1977 season 1 19th (22) Scotland Jim Blyth Wales Terry Yorath England Mick Ferguson 15 England John Beck 45
1977–1978 season 1 7th (22) Scotland Ian Wallace Wales Terry Yorath Scotland Ian Wallace 23 Scotland Bobby McDonald 47
England Barry Powell 47
1978–1979 season 1 10th (22) Scotland Bobby McDonald Wales Terry Yorath Scotland Ian Wallace 15 Scotland Tommy Hutchison 45
Scotland Bobby McDonald 45
1979–1980 season 1 15th (22) Scotland Gary Gillespie Scotland Tommy Hutchison Scotland Ian Wallace 13 Scotland Tommy Hutchison 45
1980–1981 season 1 16th (22) England Danny Thomas England Mick Coop England Garry Thompson 15 England Paul Dyson 54
England Harry Roberts 54
Football League Cup Semi-finalists
1981–1982 season 1 14th (22) England Danny Thomas Republic of Ireland Gerry Daly England Mark Hateley 18 Scotland Gary Gillespie 46 PFA Merit Award: England Joe Mercer
1982–1983 season 1 19th (22) Scotland Gary Gillespie England Gerry Francis England Steve Whitton 14 Scotland Gary Gillespie 48 PFA Team OTY: England Danny Thomas
1983–1984 season 1 19th (22) England Nick Platnauer England Harry Roberts England Terry Gibson 19 England Terry Gibson 41
England Nick Platnauer 41
1984–1985 season 1 18th (22) England Terry Gibson England Trevor Peake England Terry Gibson 19 England Steve Ogrizovic 46
1985–1986 season 1 17th (22) England Trevor Peake England Brian Kilcline England Terry Gibson 13 England Steve Ogrizovic 47
1986–1987 season 1 10th (22) England Steve Ogrizovic England Brian Kilcline England Cyrille Regis 16 England Steve Ogrizovic 53 FA Cup Winners: 1987 FA Cup Final;
FA Youth Cup Winners: 1987 FA Youth Cup Final;

BBC Goal of the Season: England Keith Houchen
1987–1988 season 1 10th (21) Scotland David Speedie England Brian Kilcline England Cyrille Regis 12 England Steve Ogrizovic 46 FA Charity Shield Runners-up: 1987 FA Charity Shield;
Full Members Cup Semi-finalists
1988–1989 season 1 7th (20) Scotland David Speedie England Brian Kilcline Scotland David Speedie 15 England Brian Borrows 42
England Steve Ogrizovic 42
1989–1990 season 1 12th (20) England Brian Borrows England Brian Kilcline Scotland David Speedie 9 England Brian Borrows 46
England David Smith 46
Football League Cup Semi-finalists
1990–1991 season 1 16th (20) Scotland Kevin Gallacher England Brian Kilcline Scotland Kevin Gallacher 16 England Brian Borrows 47 PFA Merit Award: Scotland Tommy Hutchison
1991–1992 season 1 19th (22) England Stewart Robson England Stewart Robson Scotland Kevin Gallacher 10 England Lloyd McGrath 46
1992–1993 season 1 15th (22) England Peter Atherton England Brian Borrows England Micky Quinn 17 England John Williams 44
1993–1994 season 1 11th (22) Republic of Ireland Phil Babb England Brian Borrows Zimbabwe Peter Ndlovu 11 Republic of Ireland Phil Babb 44
England Steve Morgan 44
1994–1995 season 1 16th (22) England Brian Borrows England Brian Borrows England Dion Dublin 16 England Brian Borrows 40
England Paul Cook 40
England Steve Ogrizovic 40
PFA Merit Award: Scotland Gordon Strachan
1995–1996 season 1 16th (20) England Paul Williams England Dion Dublin England Dion Dublin 16 England John Salako 43
1996–1997 season 1 17th (20) England Dion Dublin Scotland Gary McAllister England Dion Dublin 13 Scotland Gary McAllister 46
England Steve Ogrizovic 46
1997–1998 season 1 11th (20) England Dion Dublin Scotland Gary McAllister England Dion Dublin 23 England Dion Dublin 43 Premier League Golden Boot: England Dion Dublin;
PFA Merit Award: England Steve Ogrizovic
1998–1999 season 1 15th (20) England Richard Shaw Scotland Gary McAllister England Noel Whelan 13 Sweden Magnus Hedman 42
England Richard Shaw 42
FA Youth Cup Runners-up
1999–2000 season 1 14th (20) Scotland Gary McAllister Scotland Gary McAllister Scotland Gary McAllister 13 Scotland Gary McAllister 43 FA Youth Cup Runners-up;
FAI Young Int'l Player OTY: Republic of Ireland Robbie Keane
2000–2001 season 1 19th (20) Republic of Ireland Gary Breen Morocco Mustapha Hadji Wales Craig Bellamy 8 Wales Craig Bellamy 39 PFA Merit Award: England Jimmy Hill
Welsh Footballer OTY: Wales John Hartson
2001–2002 season 2 11th (24) England David Thompson England John Eustace England Lee Hughes 14 Bosnia and Herzegovina Muhamed Konjić 41
2002–2003 season 2 20th (24) Bosnia and Herzegovina Muhamed Konjić Bosnia and Herzegovina Muhamed Konjić England Jay Bothroyd 11 Bosnia and Herzegovina Muhamed Konjić 48
2003–2004 season 2 12th (24) England Stephen Warnock Bosnia and Herzegovina Muhamed Konjić England Gary McSheffrey 12 England Stephen Warnock 49 FWA Tribute Award: England Jimmy Hill
2004–2005 season 2 19th (24) Republic of Ireland Michael Doyle England Stephen Hughes England Gary McSheffrey 14 Republic of Ireland Michael Doyle 49 First CONCACAF 50-goal scorer: Trinidad and Tobago Stern John
Last goal at Highfield Road: England Andy Whing
2005–2006 season 2 8th (24) England Gary McSheffrey Republic of Ireland Michael Doyle England Gary McSheffrey 17 England Gary McSheffrey 50 First goal at Ricoh Arena: Faroe Islands Claus Bech Jørgensen
2006–2007 season 2 17th (24) England Andy Marshall Wales Rob Page Nigeria Dele Adebola 9 Nigeria Dele Adebola 42
Republic of Ireland Michael Doyle 42
England Marcus Hall 42
England Andy Marshall 42
Birmingham Senior Cup Winners
2007–2008 season 2 21st (24) Republic of Ireland Jay Tabb England Stephen Hughes Malta Michael Mifsud 17 Republic of Ireland Michael Doyle 49
England Isaac Osbourne 49
Republic of Ireland Jay Tabb 49
2008–2009 season 2 17th (24) Iceland Aron Gunnarsson England Scott Dann Republic of Ireland Clinton Morrison 12 Republic of Ireland Keiren Westwood 49 PFA Team OTY: England Danny Fox, Republic of Ireland Keiren Westwood
2009–2010 season 2 19th (24) Republic of Ireland Keiren Westwood England Stephen Wright Republic of Ireland Clinton Morrison 11 Republic of Ireland Keiren Westwood 46
2010–2011 season 2 18th (24) Jamaica Marlon King Republic of Ireland Lee Carsley Jamaica Marlon King 13 Republic of Ireland Richard Keogh 48 FL Fan OTY: England Kevin Monks
2011–2012 season 2 23rd (24) Republic of Ireland Richard Keogh Northern Ireland Sammy Clingan England Lukas Jutkiewicz 9
England Gary McSheffrey 9
Republic of Ireland Richard Keogh 47
Republic of Ireland Joe Murphy 47
Championship Apprentice Award: Burundi Gaël Bigirimana
2012–2013 season 3 15th (24) England Carl Baker England Carl Baker Republic of Ireland David McGoldrick 18 Republic of Ireland Joe Murphy 56 FLT Northern area finalists;
PFA Team OTY: England Leon Clarke;
FL Fan OTY: England Pat Raybould
2013–2014 season 3 18th (24) †† England Callum Wilson England Carl Baker England Callum Wilson 22 Republic of Ireland Joe Murphy 53 FL Goal OTY: Belgium Franck Moussa;
PFA Team OTY: England Callum Wilson
2014–2015 season 3 17th (24) Scotland Jim O'Brien Benin Réda Johnson England Frank Nouble 7 Scotland John Fleck 47
Scotland Jim O'Brien 47
2015–2016 season 3 8th (24) Scotland John Fleck Wales Sam Ricketts England Adam Armstrong 20 Wales Sam Ricketts 46
France Romain Vincelot 46
PFA Team OTY: England Adam Armstrong
2016–2017 season 3 23rd (24) Wales George Thomas England Jordan Willis Wales George Thomas 9 England Jordan Turnbull 46
England Jordan Willis 46
EFL Trophy Winners: 2017 EFL Trophy Final
2017–2018 season 4 6th (24) Scotland Marc McNulty Republic of Ireland Michael Doyle Scotland Marc McNulty 28 Scotland Jack Grimmer 53 EFL League Two play-offs Winners: 2018 play-off Final;
EFL Team OTY: England Lee Burge, England Jordan Willis;
PFA Team OTY: Scotland Jack Grimmer;
PFA Fans' Player OTY: Scotland Marc McNulty
2018–2019 season 3 8th (24) Scotland Dominic Hyam Scotland Liam Kelly England Jordy Hiwula 13 England Luke Thomas 44
2019–2020 season 3 1st (23) ††† England Fankaty Dabo Scotland Liam Kelly England Matt Godden 15 Republic of Ireland Jordan Shipley 42 EFL League One Champions;
LMA Awards Manager OTY: England Mark Robins;
PFA Team OTY: Slovakia Marko Maroši, England Fankaty Dabo,
England Liam Walsh, England Matt Godden
2020–2021 season 2 16th (24) England Callum O'Hare Scotland Liam Kelly England Tyler Walker 8 England Callum O'Hare 48
2021–2022 season 2 12th (24) Netherlands Gustavo Hamer England Kyle McFadzean Sweden Viktor Gyökeres 18 Sweden Viktor Gyökeres 47
England Callum O'Hare 47
Championship Apprentice Award: Wales Ryan Howley

Coventry City deducted 10 points by the Football League for going into administration.
†† Coventry City deducted 10 points by the Football League.
††† Bury were expelled from the EFL on 27 August 2019 due to financial issues at the club. The season was postponed on 13 March 2020 and later concluded prematurely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with league positions and promotions decided on a points-per-game basis.

Club honours

Notable players

Official Hall of Fame

Player Apps Goals
England Dave Bennett 201 33
England Brian Borrows 477 13
England Clarrie Bourton 241 182
Scotland Willie Carr 280 36
England Mick Coop 492 22
England George Curtis 538 13
Scotland Jimmy Dougall 236 14
England Dion Dublin 170 72
Player Apps Goals
England Ron Farmer 311 52
England Mick Ferguson 141 57
Scotland Ian Gibson 101 14
England Bill Glazier 395 0
England Fred Herbert 199 85
England George Hudson 129 75
England Ernie Hunt 166 51
Scotland Tommy Hutchison 355 30
Player Apps Goals
England Mick Kearns 382 16
Wales Leslie Jones 145 73
Scotland Jock Lauderdale 182 63
Wales George Lowrie 85 59
England Ernie Machin 289 39
England George Mason 350 9
England Reg Matthews 116 0
England Steve Ogrizovic 601 1
Player Apps Goals
England Trevor Peake 336 7
Wales Ronnie Rees 262 52
England Cyrille Regis 283 62
England Richard Shaw 362 1
England Danny Thomas 123 6
Scotland Ian Wallace 138 60
England Alf Wood 246 0

Notable Academy graduates

Player Achievements
England Tom Bayliss 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner
Burundi Gaël Bigirimana 2017 EFL Trophy Final winner, 2012 Championship Apprentice Award winner
England Lee Burge 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner, 2017 EFL Trophy Final winner, over 150 appearances for the first team
Republic of Ireland Cyrus Christie 24 international caps and 2 goals for Republic of Ireland, over 100 appearances for the first team
England Jordan Clarke Over 100 appearances for the first team
England Jonson Clarke-Harris 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner, youngest player to play in a first-team match
England John Eustace Club captain
England Marcus Hall England U21 captain, over 300 appearances for the first team
England Ryan Haynes 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner, 2017 EFL Trophy Final winner
England Chris Kirkland 1 international cap for England, 2004–05 UEFA Champions League winner
England James Maddison 1 international cap for England, January 2018 EFL Young Player of the Month
England Gary McSheffrey Over 250 appearances for the first team, two-time Football League Championship runner-up
England Isaac Osbourne Over 100 appearances for the first team
England Jordan Ponticelli 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner
Republic of Ireland Jordan Shipley 2019–20 EFL League One winner, 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner, over 100 appearances for the first team
England Ben Stevenson 2017 EFL Trophy Final winner
England Daniel Sturridge 26 international caps and 8 goals for England, 2011–12 UEFA Champions League winner, 2009–10 Premier League winner
England Conor Thomas Over 100 appearances for the first team
Wales George Thomas 2017 EFL Trophy Final winner
England Ben Turner 2012–13 Football League Championship winner
England Andy Whing Over 100 appearances for the first team
England Jordan Willis 2017–18 EFL League Two play-off winner, 2017 EFL Trophy Final winner, club captain, over 200 appearances for the first team
England Callum Wilson 4 international caps and 1 goal for England, two Premier League hat-tricks, 2014–15 Football League Championship winner

Player records

Record Details
Highest transfer fee paid Wales Craig Bellamy, £6,500,000 in 2000 (Norwich City)
Highest transfer fee received Republic of Ireland Robbie Keane, £13,000,000 in 2000 (Internazionale)
Most appearances (all competitions) England Steve Ogrizovic, 601 (1984–2000)
Most appearances (league) England Steve Ogrizovic, 504 (1984–2000)
All-time top scorer (all competitions) England Clarrie Bourton, 182 goals (1931–1937)
All-time top scorer (league) England Clarrie Bourton, 173 goals (1931–1937)
Top-flight era top scorer (all competitions) England Dion Dublin, 72 goals (1994–1998)
Top-flight era top scorer (league) England Dion Dublin, 60 goals (1994–1998)
Most goals by one player in a game England Arthur Bacon, 5 (vs Gillingham, 1933)
England Clarrie Bourton, 5 (vs Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic, 1931)
England Cyrille Regis, 5 (vs Chester City, 1985)
Most goals by one player in a season England Clarrie Bourton, 50 (1931–1932, 49 league, 1 FA Cup)
Most goals by one player in a season in top-flight England Dion Dublin, 23 (1997–1998)
Scotland Ian Wallace, 23 (1977–1978)
Oldest player to play in a first-team match England Alf Wood, 43 years 207 days (vs Plymouth Argyle, 1958)
Youngest player to play in a first-team match England Jonson Clarke-Harris, 16 years 21 days (substitute vs Morecambe, 2010)
Youngest player to start a first-team match England Brian Hill, 16 years 273 days (vs Gillingham, 1958)



External links