Sunday was a day that I never thought would happen for this club. At the beginning of the summer we all knew there was a possibility that the club may not have been playing at the Ricoh but I for one never truly believed that it would happen.
Sunday brought about a new chapter in the drama that is Coventry City and for the few fans who decided to make the journey it was a game to remember. A final score of 5-4 saw the Skyblues get their first points of the new season and give them a first win in their new ‘home’ in Northampton.
There was a strange atmosphere circulating around the Coventry fans who remain divided over whether or not we should be going to support the team or staying away in protest to Sisu. My personal views are that no city fan should be putting any more money into the accounts of Sisu. We are their income and if we withdraw that income then surely something has to give.
Although I do appreciate why others still want to go. The boys on that pitch do deserve our support and it is painful to stay away when we are all used to going to them home games week in week out. I would never slate a fan who chooses to go as watching your side play on a ‘Saturday’ afternoon or in our case a Sunday is the basis of what it means to be a football fan.
My current working arrangements were set in place so that I would never miss a Coventry game with my Saturday afternoons always remaining free with the football in mind. Now with the move to Sunday even if I wanted to go to Northampton I couldn’t because of work commitments. This is the sort of thing that people at Sisu and the football league etc. fail to consider.
It has always taken a lot to force me to miss City matches in the past 10 years or so but now it has been turned on its head and it would now take a lot for me to even be able to go to a match. I still cannot believe it has come to this with our club but it is looking more likely than ever that we are going to have to accept that this is going to be the norm for the foreseeable future.
The majority of us who didn’t go were not just robbed of watching the club we love but we were robbed of what sounded like a bit of a classic. So many games we have been to and had to sit there and suffer as lacklustre performances see us lose with a whimper. This was not the case on Saturday as the players once again gave it their all to create a remarkable 9 goal thriller.
The Skyblues began the match with another new addition to the squad in the form of central defender Andy Webster. He started at the heart of defence who had conceded 3 goals in both of their last two games. It was probably too early to expect him to have a real impact in terms of making our defence more solid but I don’t think anyone expected us to ship 4 goals making it 10 goals conceded in 3 games.
This is far from being a good record but on the plus side their goalscoring record has been the best it has been in years. 9 goals in 3 games is a great scoring record and long may that continue. As Pressley stated in an interview as long as we keep scoring more than the opposition then we will all be happy. Whilst it’s worrying to see us ship the amount of goals we have been it makes for some real exiting football matches and that is one thing Pressley promised when he came to the club.
It was a match which the Skyblues had to cope with without their captain Carl Baker for his very harsh red card in the previous game. Leon Clarke was given the captains armband and led the team well from the front and it was his penalty which got the scoring underway after Wilson was brought down in the penalty area.
Then in the last few minutes of the first half Wilson got himself on the score sheet with a well taken goal quickly followed by a looping header by Billy Daniels which was his first senior goal for the club. This meant City went in at half time 3-0 to the good and the points already looked secure after a very dominant performance.
This was to change though and 30 minutes into the second half and Coventry saw there 3 goal lead completely demolished as Baldock levelled the game with his second. The Skyblues responded brilliantly though as within a couple of minutes their lead was restored through Wilson’s second of the game.
It was already a bit of classic but the drama was not over yet as Bristol levelled again through Elliot and we all thought how has this happened, how are we not going to win this game. The players had other ideas though and with 3 minutes of normal time remaining young Billy Daniels got himself into the box and latched onto Leon Clarkes’s low cross to send the 1000 or so city fans crazy.
The final whistle went and the drama had finally come to an end. Despite the brilliant result there was many left with underlying feelings of contempt that this wonderful match had taken place away from Coventry’s rightful home.
I have to mention the charity match which took place at the Ricoh at the same time as Coventry’s game at Northampton. The fans there which I would have been one of if it wasn’t for work commitments made themselves heard. A great turnout and a great message of defiance sent out to the football world.
Also a special mention goes to Graeme Hawley who made an appearance wearing Skyblue with some of his boyhood Coventry idols. I know how much that day would have meant and it was a dream come true I’m sure. My only regret is that I was unable to be there for it as it sounded like a great day and a good distraction from everything that is happening at our club.