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Coventry City ponder ground relocation

Coventry City ponder ground relocation
Coventry City FC are considering relocating from their current stadium if disputes over rent prices continue.

The Midlands club currently play their games at the Ricoh Arena following their move from Highfield Road in 2005 but they have been locked in negotiations with Arena Coventry Limited (ACL) which currently runs and manages the stadium. The organisation claims that the Sky Blues owes £1.1 million in rent arrears and must pay it by Boxing Day or they face the prospect of a winding-up order. This has prompted officials at the club to consider possible alternatives to playing their games at the Ricoh and a re-location out of Coventry has been put forward.

Coventry are keen to negotiate the rent rates and believe that they are currently too high to sustain. The Ricoh has a capacity of 32,300 but the Sky Blues have rarely been able to fill the stadium and attendances have dropped from around 15,000 when the club was in the Championship to 10,500 following the club's relegation to League One in the 2011/12 campaign.

The Sky Blues said in a statement: "The club has commenced the sensible process of making contact with other clubs. To evaluate if their stadiums meet our requirements should negotiations with ACL fail to reach a mutually agreed position on the rent, with the result that CCFC is forced to move away from the Ricoh to a new venue."

There have been reports that Nene Park, former home of defunct side Rushden & Diamonds and Kettering Town, could be a potential new stadium for the club. However, the ground only holds 6,500 and is a 90-mile round trip away from Coventry.

A move from the club's city  may anger supporters in the same way that Wimbledon fans boycotted the team after it relocated from their home in London to Milton Keynes to form MK Dons. Should Coventry move to Irthlingborough it could provoke the same reaction from the Sky Blues faithful.

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Date: 12/12/2012 15:24:57

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