Date:Sunday June 19 2011
Coventry City will be the Championship`s longest serving club next season following the relegation of Preston North End, the 2011/12 campaign being their 11th in a row in the second tier of English football.
A fine finish to the 2005/06 season, the club`s first at the Ricoh Arena, meant hopes were high going into the new campaign but the sale of Gary McSheffrey to Birmingham at the end of August disrupted the Sky Blues front-line that had caused such problems for teams the season before.
Leon McKenzie and Kevin Kyle were signed to replace the Coventry kid. Neither made a big impact but McKenzie`s whole-hearted style of play made him a fans favourite, something that could not be said of Kyle!
City were inconsistent throughout the autumn and frustrations over the way the club were going (as financial problems continued to be reported) spilled over onto the terraces with manager Micky Adams bearing the brunt of it. His decision to substitute McKenzie at Barnsley brought a hail of abuse from the visiting fans but Adams had the last laugh as the man he threw on, Wayne Andrews, netted an immediate winner.
A disastrous Christmas and New Year period spelled the end for Adams as the Sky Blues defence simply fell apart, conceding 22 goals in 8 games which included an FA Cup dismantling at the hands of lower league Bristol City.
With hindsight Adams could justifiably feel hard done by having saved the club from relegation at a crucial point in its history with the new stadium move just round the corner, before guiding City to what would turn out to be the highest finish they would achieve in the whole decade.
But spirits at the Ricoh Arena were restored in the short-term as new manager Iain Dowie inspired an upturn in fortunes, helped by a player signed by Adams in his final weeks in charge. Nippy Maltese striker Michael Mifsud quickly became the man to watch for opposition defences and a firm favourite of the home fans.
Date:Sunday June 19 2011
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