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22nd Feb 2019

EFL warn Coventry City face expulsion over Ricoh uncertainty

Simon Lloyd

Coventry City have been given a deadline of March 5

The English Football League have warned Coventry City they could be removed from the league unless they are able to confirm where they intend to play their home fixtures next season.

The Sky Blues have just six home games remaining this season at the Ricoh Arena – a stadium built for the club that is now owned by rugby side, Wasps.

Coventry have a rental agreement with Wasps which is due to expire at the end of the season. Their owners, Sisu, are currently involved in a legal battle with the rugby side over their purchase of part of the stadium’s operating company from the city’s council.

Wasps have made it clear they will not negotiate an extension while the legal challenge from Sisu continues.

In a statement released on Friday, the EFL confirmed that they have notified Coventry that they have until March 5 to clarify where they intend to play next season’s home fixtures.

Failure to provide more clarity will see the EFL call an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of all 72 clubs which will consider the club’s expulsion from the league and its future membership.

Sisu’s original call for a judicial review into the sale of the Ricoh was rejected last October. Sisu announced the following month that they intended to appeal the decision.

The club temporarily moved to Northampton Town’s Sixfields Stadium in 2013 after Sisu stopped paying rent at the Ricoh to the arena’s then-operating company – a move that angered many of the club’s supporters. They eventually moved back in 2014, having not played a single game in Coventry for 17 months.

Coventry travel to Luton Town on Sunday afternoon, where some of their supporters will hold a ‘6andOut’ protest – a reference to the fact the potentially faces just six more home games before expulsion from the EFL.