Walk the Football Again This Thursday at St Finbarrs

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Walking Football, the popular new health initiative designed for the over 50s is quickly expanding across the country and CCFPA is encouraging you to take part. If you live in the Coventry area you have two choices to join in.:- at one of its first bases at St. Finbarr’s Sports & Social Club (303 Holbrooks Lane CV6 4DG) every Thursday or at Bedworth Town’s ground, the Bedworth Oval on Monday mornings.

A Happy Team Photo of the 'Walking Football' Participants Yesterday

A Happy Team Photo of the ‘Walking Football’ Participants

Locally, each ‘Walking Football’ event is organised by  Sky Blue in the Community (SBiTC)  supremo, former Sky Blue defender and CCFPA member David Busst along with SBiTC’s Hiedi Sloan. The sessions which are supported by, amongst others, CCFPA, Cov Support News Service and CCFC Diamond Club take place from 10:30am until noon at a cost of £3 which includes refreshments.  You can find out more by contacting the Sky Blues in the Community Team by Email: sbitc@ccfc.co.uk , or Telephone: 02476 786 314, or Text: 07813 455 531.

SBiTC Walking Football A5 1pp (print)If you’re over 50 years old and would like to get involved you can’t do better than join us in these popular sessions (see our reports on the fun to be had at previous sessions in earlier news items)! According to CCFPA committee member Frank Pritchard past games have been very competitive showing commitment from anything between 20 and 35 players usually including several ‘first-timers’ who once they have tried it out find it very much to their liking!

The mix of Sky Blue fans, Association committee members, CCFPA Associate Members, and our full members, usually include some of our most well respected former players like Dietmar Bruck, Ian Goodwin and Dave Bennett. The sessions, designed for over 50s who wish to exercise gently and enjoyably through football in the company of friends try to ensure that all play is at kept at walking pace and running is penalised!

Why not come along and join in the next sessions of ‘Walking Football’ at St Finbarr’s tomorrow (Thursday 25th June) and Bedworth Oval next Monday (29th June) and keep fit during the close season?

Sky Blue Legends take on Midlands Rivals in Club Legends Cup Next Month

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Former Sky Blue defender David Busst with Darren Purse and Jody Craddock at the media launch for the Club Legends Cup 2015

Once more a Sky Blue Legends team is entering the indoor ‘Club Legends Cup’ in Birmingham this July (and fans have been offered the opportunity to play with their heroes)!  The tourney, which attracted over 3000 fans, last year takes place at Birmingham’s Barclaycard Arena on Saturday July 11th 2015

The likes of CCFPA members David Busst, Lee Carsley, John Williams and Claus Bech Jorgensen are already reported to have signed up for the special tournament which will support ‘Cure Leukaemia’ in 2015 and many more legends from the region’s clubs are still to be announced. Aston Villa, Birmingham City, West Bromwich Albion, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Leicester City, Derby County and Nottingham Forest are all expected to join the Sky Blues in the competition. The tournament has, in effect, replaced the former Midland Masters tournament which a Sky Blues former players teams regularly entered a few years back.

The CCFC Legends last year contained the likes of Steven Pressley, Dave Busst, Steve Morgan, Tynan Scope, Dele Adebola, John Williams, Claus Jorgensen, Dave Bennett and Lee Carsley

Fans were offered the opportunity to play alongside their club heroes by entering an online auction, with all of the proceeds going to charity. Earlier this month the three highest bidders of each team were invited to join their heroes in the dressing room before entering the field of play. The organisers say that this year the big Midlands derby matches will be guaranteed with the two qualifying two groups. This time, also under-16s can attend the LG Arena for FREE with adult tickets priced at £12 plus booking fees which works out under £1 a game for up to 15 matches. For further details, click here.

Look out for further details of the Sky Blues Legends team on this site as the date of the tournament approaches!

                

 

Close Season News: CCFPA Members in Management

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Sky Blue Rob

Sky Blue Rob

Having been with Port Vale as a coach since 2011 former Sky Blues defender Rob Page (2005-08) succeeded Micky Adams in the manager’s chair (after a spell as assistant and caretaker manager) in autumn 2014 and looks forward to the new League One campaign after the Vale flirted with relegation last season. ‘Coventry kid’ Vale chairman Norman Smurthwaite is reported to be ‘ready to be ruthless’ if Page’s charges do not make a good start in 2015.

Manager- Adams, M (Micky)Experienced manager Micky Adams who played for the Sky Blues (1983-87) and managed them between 2005-07 spent nearly all of last season in the manager’s chair at Prenton Park but eventually left the club ‘by mutual consent’ in April 2015 with Tranmere Rovers League Two relegation certainties. Micky is still looking for a new challenge as is Steven Pressley, the Sky Blues former player (1994-95) and manager (from 03/2013 until he left CCFC in February 2015).

Paul in the Sky Blue 1995

Paul in the Sky Blue 1995

CCFPA Vice Chair Billy Bell signs Steven up last season

CCFPA Vice Chair Billy Bell signs Steven up last season

Last season, yet one more former Sky Blue defender (1994-96) Paul Cook, continued to manage League One side Chesterfield where he had been in the hot seat since October 2012. Last month, Paul success in guiding the Derbyshire side to the play-offs persuaded Portsmouth to poach him for their upcoming League Two campaign.

Peter at Highfield Road

Peter at Highfield Road

Kevin MacDonaldExperienced gaffer (and former Bolton, Everton and Manchester City star) Peter Reid, who managed CCFC in a difficult time in 2004-05 has been managing Mumbai City FC since September 2014 in their inaugural Indian Super League season.  In February 2015 former Sky Blue midfielder and CCFPA member Kevin MacDonald (1996-99) was brought in as assistant manager to ex CCFC colleague Tim Sherwood in an eventually successful bid to save neighbours Aston Villa from likely relegation from the Premiership.

Non League Managers include:-

Gavin StrachanCCFPA member Gavin Strachan (1997-2003) who started his career at Highfield Road and takes up his first senior managerial appointment in time for next season taking over the reins at Northern premier League outfit Ilkeston Town.  Gavin, who had been youth coach at Peterborough United since 2011 is half of one of the relatively few CCFC father and son partnerships, his dad Gordon who is current Scottish manager having played for the Sky Blues 1995-97 and managed them from 1996-2001.

Andy (right) with Kevin

Andy (right) with Kevin

Ex Sky Blue forward Andy Morrell (2003-06) who managed Wrexham from 2011-14 is currently in charge of (and sometimes turning out for) Tamworth. Last season’s managerial experience of rugged former Sky Blue defender () Liam Daish as manager of near neighbours Nuneaton Town was not a good one. Liam left in April following the relegation of his team from the Conference Premier League.

Liam (left) with Tony

Liam (left) with Tony

Interestingly, although none are currently CCFPA members former Sky Blues are now currently in charge of Scotland (Gordon Strachan), Wales (Chris Coleman) and Northern Ireland (Michael O’Neill). CCFPA also have a number of other members who as well as playing and/or managing CCFC have managed at the top level in the past. These include Dave Jones, Ron Atkinson, Don Mackay and Gordon Milne

Close Season News: CCFPA’s Current Professionals- Part 3

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Richard Wood: Good to be back

Richard Wood

Stalwart former Sky Blue defender and Association member Richard Wood (2009-13) has been shoring up the defences of a number of clubs since leaving the Ricoh. After 26 games for Charlton Athletic in 2013-14, last season (2014-15) Richard turned out eight times for new club Rotherham United before knocking in 3 goals in 10 appearances for relegated club Crawley Town on loan before being recalled. At the time of writing Richard’s services appear to have been retained for the Millers for the coming season.

Gail Bigirimana signs up Feb2012-MY tidied

CCFPA’s Mike Young signs up Gael 2012

The career of former Sky Blues starlet Gael Bigirimana who had such a promising Sky Blue Ricoh start in 2011-12 seemed to have stalled. After moving to Newcastle United and making 13 league and 11 cup appearances the following season, Gael got in only a solitary League Cup outing for the ‘Toon’ in 2013-14 and was loaned out along with four other United players to Glasgow Rangers for 2014-15. A mystery illness is reported to have prevented him playing in Scotland.

Kirkland, C (Chris)Former Sky Blue goalkeeper and Association member Chris Kirkland (1997-2001) continues service with Sheffield Wednesday for whom he made eight Championship and cup appearances in 2014-15. After starting out a promising career at Highfield Road Chris has had earlier spells with Liverpool, West Brom, Wigan, Leicester and Doncaster picking up an England cap on the way. Chris is reported to have been offered new terms by the Owls for the coming season.

Look out in the next few days for news about former Sky Blues (who are CCFPA members) and who are currently furthering their professional career in club management.