After each matchday programme this season, we publish the regular column from the Coventry City board on our website. You can read Coventry City Chief Executive Dave Boddy's column our game against Reading below:
Good afternoon and welcome to today’s game as we face Reading in the Sky Bet Championship.
I would also like to welcome the players, staff, officials and supporters who join us at the Coventry Building Society Arena today from Reading.
Our first Championship game back in Coventry at the Coventry Building Society Arena proved to be successful on all fronts - a crowd of nearly 21,000 (the second highest in the opening Championship round of fixtures), an unbelievable atmosphere created by the Sky Blue Army, a dramatic 96th minute winner from Fadz and a successful operational return led to a pleasing day for all connected with the Club.
Since the Forest game we have had two away games at Barnsley and Blackpool and again the Sky Blue Army was out in force at both, and your vocal support, particularly at Blackpool, always helps to spur the team on and never ceases to amaze me.
During last week, the Club passed a momentous milestone in achieving Season Ticket sales of 10,200, which is the highest number of Season Tickets sold since the 1969/70 season total of 11,579 – beating the previous highest of 10,175 in the 2009/10 campaign. This is an amazing achievement and is testament to Sky Blues supporters backing our return to Coventry and Mark Robins and the players.
Everybody involved in the Club appreciates this and we will continue to try and drive the numbers even higher in the future to help drive the development of the team and the Club. Just four seasons ago we were in League Two with 4,500 Season Ticket holders, so it goes to show the progress that is being made.
Obviously we have had teething problems with the return to the Arena, which has lead to Ricoh Return Members and Season Ticket holders not receiving their Seasonal Cards ahead of the first game against Nottingham Forest. The issue was that there was a problem with the IT connectivity between our two third party partners Ticketmaster (who operate our ticketing solutions) and Fortress (who operate the access control system at turnstiles at the stadium). These two companies work closely together at numerous stadiums up and down the country but unfortunately there was a glitch in the system which they struggled to resolve meaning that Season Tickets could not be produced until this problem was solved. We apologise for any inconvenience that this may have caused people. All Phase 1 Ricoh Return Members, apart from those who have had seat moves, should now have received their cards, and the process of sending cards to Phase 2 members and Season Ticket holders will begin next week.
As part of our return to the Arena, we have been able to open our own Club Shop and Ticket Office in the South-East corner of the stadium, which I hope supporters are impressed with. Rebuilding that area of the stadium into a retail unit from the area that existed was a major project over the Summer. Our thanks go to Scott Joyce Builders and our retail partners Hummel, who between them have played an integral role in developing a Club Shop and Ticket Office that we can be proud of.
Our thanks also go to Intervari Shopfitters, Steel Construction Limited, Aplan Architectural Design Ltd, Moseley Signs, Verilan IT, Converge IT and also Alan Pickering and his team at the Arena.
Thank you for your support, enjoy the game - PUSB