Drawing Arsenal A 'Win-Win-Lose' Situation!
Ball number 1 in Sunday's FA Cup 4th Round draw, Coventry City's reward for their excellent 2-1 victory at Championship side Barnsley was an away trip to face the Premier League leaders, Arsenal, for the second time in two season in cup competitions after a 6-1 defeat in the League Cup in 2012/13.
There are three elements to the draw from a Sky Blues point of view. The first, and easiest, is that on a football level it means almost certain defeat. Whatever side they put out, Arsenal simply don't lose these types of games and despite injuries to the likes of Theo Walcott they will still be fielding a formidable side.
City are much improved from the team that last took the field at the Emirates (Jamie Reckord, Reece Brown?) but even a manager who has the faith in his players that Steven Pressley does will travel more in hope than expectation.
For the club themselves their 40% share of a 60,000 gate paying adult prices of around £26 will generate the kind of income that can wipe out a season's losses at a stroke, a situation that could cause unease among those supporters who were hoping that the owners would be sufficiently starved of funds over the next few years of groundsharing that they decided to sell up.
But, primarily, this is a day to be enjoyed. The fans who go deserve to enjoy the experience and watch a City side who have performed above themselves all season match up against one of the best teams in the country. Pressley's men have earned their crack at a top side, the supporters at 'home' and away have been magnificent and, yes, the people who appointed the manager in the first place and have since backed him as much as they can will also be entitled to a good feeling.
It won't change minds on the overall situation the club remains mired in but it is a glimpse of what can be achieved.