20th Oct, 2017

Ricoh Arena return does not solve issues - MP

Coventry Editorial 4th Sep, 2014 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

A RICOH return does not mean Coventry City’s problems have been solved, a city MP has warned.

Jim Cunningham branded the move back to the stadium a short-term solution and said more needed to be done to tackle issues in football governance.

He made the comments in a House of Commons debate dedicated to the Sky Blues’ stadium saga.

“We are all very pleased that the club is coming home,” the Coventry South MP said.

“It is good news and nobody wants to be a killjoy.

“However, in my opinion there is a distinct danger that, because Coventry have finally returned to the Ricoh, it will be thought that it is a case of problem solved, but that is not true at all.

“Although the most immediate problem has been resolved, we must not disregard the deeper, underlying problems that have been exposed.”

He added: “Let us be clear – Coventry City Football Club should never have been moved to Northampton in the first place.”

Mr Cunningham called for massive changes in football governance including an overhaul of the Football Association, the setting up of a licensing system and drastic changes to club ownership rules.

He also accused the government of performing a u-turn on proposals to reform the football industry.

But junior minister Helen Grant rejected that claim and added: “I have regular meetings with the football authorities, and I will continue to raise these issues as a matter of urgency, saying that we need to see progress.

“If progress is not made, we of course have the option of legislation – we always have that option.”

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