Battle with Coventry City Council over sale of stadium dropped after 10 years
The owners of Coventry City Football Club have ended all legal proceedings relating to the sale of its stadium, the Coventry Building Society Arena (formerly the Ricoh Arena), to Wasps Rugby Club.
The dispute between the football club’s owners and Coventry City Council – which has been ongoing for more than ten years – related to claims by the club’s owners that the sale of the stadium breached European state aid regulations because, they claimed, it was sold for less than its true value.
During the last decade, numerous attempts to break the impasse had failed. The club now has plans to build a new stadium on the University of Warwick’s campus.
A statement from Coventry City’s owners said: “Talks involving the owners of CCFC, and the University of Warwick, have now resulted in an end to the long-running dispute.
“The decision will allow the football club and Coventry City Council to open a meaningful dialogue for the first time in a decade. All parties are of course committed to work together to create a world-class football club for Coventry.”
Joy Seppala, one of the owners of Coventry City FC, said: “Following discussions with the University of Warwick, we are now able to end all proceedings relating to the sale of the Coventry Building Society Arena.
“As we move forward with our vision, we want to draw a clear line under the past and continue to build new and strong relationships with all our partners, including Coventry City Council. We can now move forward to achieve this, and together, deliver a football club which the city of Coventry can continue to be proud.”
Stuart Croft, vice-chancellor at the University of Warwick, added: “We have worked closely with Coventry City FC to get to this point. I want to thank both Cllr George Duggins and Joy Seppala for their openness, collaboration, and forward-thinking.
“I’m delighted that Coventry City FC have now sought to end all proceedings and together we can move forward together towards an exciting future.
“The University of Warwick is proud to be able to support our city’s football club. Not only will this benefit the club and its fans, but the wider benefits to the city will be significant.”