Coventry City owner Joy Seppala has spoken about the “watershed moment” that helped turn the fortunes of the club.
The Sisu boss also thanked fans who have “sought to bring reconciliation” to the club and city when she addressed supporters during Saturday evening’s official promotion party, during which the Sky Blues celebrated by spraying Champagne and getting their hands on the League One trophy.
The club’s end of season awards were also handed out with favourite Fankaty Dabo scooping the top honour of Player of the Year.
During the evening of online celebrations organised by the newly promoted football club, Ms Seppala took to the microphone to thank manager Mark Robins, his staff and players and everyone connected with the club over a what have been some difficult years, peppered with the success of two Wembley finals and two promotions, the most recent returning City to the Championship after eight years.
That was achieved with the backdrop of the team playing at their Birmingham City groundshare – a move that divided the club’s fanbase.
But Ms Seppala spoke of the club’s “call of unity” and “spirit” of the club to get through the “trials and tribulations” that have been experienced in recent years.
“I want to thank innumerable fans and individuals over many, many years who have sought to, and this is, you know, past and present, hopefully not future, who have really sought to bring reconciliation to the club and the city,” she said, perhaps hinting that there may be positive moves to get the club back to Coventry.
“And again it’s – I’ll get very emotional – but I want to thank them because they’re the people that most don’t even know of.
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“And last, but certainly not least, are the supporters and the fans that have attended both home matches and away matches, or as some might say ‘away, away’ matches.
“But the fact is I really want to thank them because they’re such an integral part and without them the club is soulless.
“I was thinking about the Sky Blue Song which is ‘while we sing together, we will never lose,’ and I think that that, really, I think is such a call of unity but it also, I think, exemplifies the spirit the club has now and who we are as a club.”
The club owner had earlier pinpointed a meeting with chief executive Dave Boddy and the club’s commercial and administrative staff about hwo they could help transform City’s fortunes off the field.
“And again that fearlessness,” she added, “because I think that when we talk about that meeting we had, whenever it was some 18 months ago, everything changes.
“It was a watershed moment because everything just started to sync; to sycronize and crystalize, and actualise actually.”