Coventry firm face huge debts
Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill cut a frustrated figure
after his side’s 2-0 defeat to Israel at Windsor Park.
The hosts were undone by late goals from Lior Refaelov and Eden
Ben Basat in the World Cup qualifier to leave O’Neill still without
a victory after nine matches in charge.
“It’s hugely disappointing, hugely frustrating,” said
“I felt we controlled large portions of the game again,
certainly in the first half I thought some of our play was
excellent, we created some good chances which we didn’t take and we
were punished twice on the counter-attack towards the end.
“Again we make life difficult for ourselves to be honest.
“It’s just a case of when we’ve been in a strong position in
games, when we’ve dominated possession, we’ve never capitalised on
“We’ve missed chances at important parts of the game and
ultimately we’ve been punished when we’ve given the other team a
bit of initiative.
“We have to start winning games, we have to get a winning
mentality into this group of players.”
Captain Steven Davis added: “I think it’s been the story of our
group so far. If you don’t take your chances at this level you get
“If you analyse the game we had the majority of chances and
possession. So we’re massively disappointed again tonight, we can’t
keep letting this happen to us.”
A High Court judge has been analysing the League One football
The lawyer, who was representing financial experts managing the
firm’s affairs, told Mrs Justice Proudman of the debts.
Detail of debt levels emerged at a High Court hearing in London
days after the firm involved was placed into administration.
Adam Goodison, who was representing administrators managing the
financial affairs of Coventry City Football Club Ltd, told the
judge that the level of “deficits” to creditors was “in the region
He added: “It is a fairly catastrophic insolvency.”
After the hearing a Coventry supporters’ club official suggested
that fans would be concerned by what had emerged.
“It’s a lot of numbers to take in,” said Michael Orton,
membership secretary of the Sky Blue Trust.
“They were talking of debts of ?60million. A catastrophic
insolvency. These are not things we’d heard before.”
A firm which owns the stadium where Coventry plays had said it
planned to ask the judge to place the club into administration,
because it was owed more than ?1.3million.
But Arena Coventry today asked for that application to be
dismissed, after learning that Coventry City Football Club Ltd had
already gone into administration.
And debt detail emerged as lawyers discussed legal issues with
Another firm involved with Coventry had announced the
administration move last week.
Coventry City Football Club (Holdings) Ltd said it would pay
wages and meet “creditor commitments” – and said the “football club
itself” was not under threat.
It remains to be seen whether the football team is the subject
of a points deduction from the Football League for the subsidiary
going into administration.
A statement by Coventry City Football Club (Holdings) Ltd last
week said the firm which had been placed into administration was a
“non-operating subsidiary of the club”.
Coventry City chief executive Tim Fisher said, after the hearing
today: “I hope all parties will now focus on re-establishing a
constructive dialogue for the good of the club and football in
“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.”