There has been some positivity around Coventry over the last few days as for the first time in a long time there have been more players coming into the club than leaving the club.
The player that did leave was Martin Cranie who was out of contract and was always expected to leave as he is clearly too good for League One football.
He has been one of the most consistent performers for the last few years having been asked to play in many different positions with his main role being at centre half partnering the ever present Richard Keogh.
The two of them built up a good relationship both on and off the pitch, which led them to become a really good centre half partnership and as much as I would have loved for him to remain at the club I think it is probably in the best interests of both parties that he decided not to extend his stay. He was most likely one of the top earners at the club and if it frees up money for other new players to come in then it is going to be a good thing.
We have good cover at centre half still with Richard Wood who when fit is a brilliant defender. Another player who could fill that void is Nathan Cameron. Despite still being young he has a reasonable amount of Championship experience behind him and a season in League One could give him the platform to not only improve his game but to make himself one of the first choice centre backs at the club.
The more important and more exciting news for Coventry fans is we have finally made our first signing of the summer which was quickly followed by our second.
The first to sign was striker Stephen Elliot, who signed a one year deal at the club following his departure from Hearts. Elliot is a 28 year old pacey centre forward who will be making his debut for his 7th club come the new season.
He has made nearly 250 appearances in his career scoring 49 goals. By no means is this a prolific scoring record but he has spent a large part of his career on the cusp of Premier League football. He has been unlucky with injuries throughout his career but the good news is the majority of these have not been particularly serious.
Andy Thorn has described him as a player who will work hard for the team and has the ability to bring others into play suggesting he may not have been brought into the club to be a goal scorer himself. Some fans maybe a little concerned as goals have been an issue for us and we could do with signing someone with a good scoring record. This is not a possibility with our financial situation though and personally I feel we already have a goal scorer in Cody McDonald who I am hoping is going to flourish in League One as he has in the lower leagues before.
The other player to arrive is 2o year old John Fleck who has signed a three year deal at the club after deciding to reject his contract being transferred over to the Rangers Newco.
Fleck is a player with a lot of promise and is widely rated as an up and coming star. He has made 66 appearances in his career so far and made his competitive debut at the tender age of 16. He went on to make himself a mainstay in the first team squad even gaining some European experience before he finished last season with a brief loan spell at Championship club Blackpool.
Considering the current state of the club this is a real coup for us and may finally be a bit of intelligent investment from the owners. He is considered to be a free agent by many but statements released to the press suggest that some sort of deal was put in place which benfits Rangers. It is understood however that no fee was involved in the transfer but that there maybe a sell on clause.
This sell on clause is the reason why I am only suggesting that it may be a good investment. I am hoping that this isn’t a significant sell on clause but with SISU you never know and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was something like a 50% sell on clause. I hope I am wrong as he could be worth a lot of money in the future and it would be a shame if we were to lose a substantial amount of it to Rangers (if they still exist.)
That is something we hopefully don’t have to worry about for a while though and instead we can focus on what a promising young player we have added to the squad. Our squad has been crying out for an attacking midfielder for a long time and we may have finally filled that void with Fleck.
These two signings are positives steps for the club and with a few more additions and hopefully being able to keep hold of Keogh to captain the team, we may finally have hope of success in the new season.