City could face points deduction
Gordon Strachan says Scotland have to cut out the defensive
mistakes after going down 2-0 to Serbia in Novi Sad.
Scotland are now out of the running for a place in the 2014
World Cup in Brazil and, just as in their 2-1 defeat by Wales on
Friday, they lost concentration for five key minutes in the defeat
that ended any slim hopes of qualification.
Filip Duricic made the most of their lapses on 60 and 65 minutes
to give Serbia three points and leave Scotland bottom of Group A
with only two points from six games.
Alan Hutton was caught out by a long ball for the opening goal
and was also on the end of a hospital pass from Gary Caldwell for
the second, leaving Strachan wondering where his side’s
concentration had gone.
“When it’s 1-0 you have always got a chance of winning but it
seems to happen too often that when one goal comes, a second
follows,” said Strachan, who is still waiting for his first
competitive win in charge.
“The same thing happened on Friday so if we lose a goal we
really need to see that the game’s not finished. There’s a time in
international football the players have to be told.
“It’s a shame for everyone who makes a mistake after putting a
lot of good work in. It’s not dishonest mistakes.
“It was heavy going and I thought technically they were a right
good side. Physically they were stronger than us which gave us
problems but they didn’t have bigger hearts than us.
“Some of these lads have never played international football
before and some of them are playing with injuries but they took the
responsibility on their shoulders.
“The longer the game went on the better it got for us. We were
happy with loads of things but it happens too often that one goal
goes in and another one quickly follows so we have to remedy
“It’s easy to work on people who are good people. It’s not a
quick fix to get as strong and as technically gifted as that. But
there’s lots of things I know I can work on.
“I said that we might have to take a few slaps but we have to do
something, we can’t keep plodding along and hoping something
happens. I want to pick players that will make things happen.
“Unfortunately for players like Shaun Maloney and Steven
Naismith, the conditions weren’t great for them but they can’t be
embarrassed. Sometimes when you have played a game of football, as
long as you have given it your best shot you can hold your head up
high. Sometimes the other team is better and that is what
Arena Coventry Limited (ACL), who manage the Ricoh Arena and
claim to be owed over ?1.3million in unpaid rent by the Sky Blues,
today returned to the High Court in London and asked for their own
application for an administration order to be dismissed.
It came after the initial hearing was adjourned last Friday,
just hours after Coventry – owned by hedge fund Sisu – placed a
non-operating subsidiary of the club, Coventry City Football Club
Limited, into administration themselves.
The npower League One outfit insist it is business as usual as
Coventry City Football Club (Holdings), which they claim runs the
football operation and holds the crucial ‘golden shares’ which
provide membership to the Football League and FA, operates as
But ACL say they have it on good authority from the Football
League and the Football Association that Coventry’s ‘golden shares’
do in fact still lie with Coventry City Football Club Ltd, which
has already gone into administration, hence the withdrawal of their
It is now down to the Football League to make an official
verdict and rule on the potential 10-point penalty, which has not
yet been imposed.
A statement released by ACL tonight said: “We are grateful to
the Football League for coming back so quickly to our legal team to
confirm that the Football League share resides with CCFC Ltd, not
CCFC Holdings, as had been suggested previously by the CCFC and the
“We are grateful also to the Football Association for its prompt
response confirming that the Football Association share resides
with CCFC Ltd, not with CCFC Holdings.
“Both of these organisations have acted quickly to bring clarity
to this process and most importantly, clarify the situation for Sky
“It has been our understanding from the outset of this legal
process that the respective shares reside with CCFC Ltd.”
Coventry are currently 10th in League One, five points off the
play-offs, with a 10-point deduction certain to end their promotion
hopes for this term.
Coventry issued their own statement this afternoon following
today’s proceedings in the High Court.
Chief executive Tim Fisher said: “I acknowledge that ACL has now
accepted that it must withdraw its administration application from
the High Court notwithstanding the fact that this was an unwelcome
and unnecessary distraction.
“I hope all parties will now focus on re-establishing a
constructive dialogue for the good of the club and football in
Coventry. We would like to ensure that Coventry City Football Club
can, in the first instance, continue to play its remaining home
matches this season at the Ricoh Arena.”
It still remains to be seen where Coventry will complete their
three remaining home games season, starting with Good Friday’s
visit of Doncaster.
The subsidiary of the club placed in administration held the
lease and licence for the Ricoh Arena, covering permission to play
home matches at the stadium.
Coventry have already emptied their club shop and offices from
the stadium, moving all staff to their Ryton training ground.
But ACL insist the Ricoh Arena remains available for use by
City, who are hopeful of striking a new short-term deal, with an
agreement expected in the next 48 hours.