Date: 5th July 2011 at 9:08pm
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Coventry City will be the Championship`s longest serving club next season following the relegation of Preston North End, the 2011/12 campaign being their 11th in a row in the second tier of English football.

Chris Coleman began his first full season in charge of the season with a victory at home to Norwich and the obligatory win at Barnsley before the Sky Blues settled into a pattern of inconsistent form that lasted up until the new year.

Under new chairman Ray Ranson (and with chief scout Andy Thorn also in place) City were pursuing a transfer policy of signing younger, hungrier players from the lower leagues and further afield. Four of the first crop of such signing made good impacts as Keiren Westwood, Scott Dann, Daniel Fox and Aron Gunnarsson became first-team regulars.

‘restored’

January brought about an upturn in league fortunes and two low-key FA Cup victories saw the Sky Blues into the 5th Round where a Gunnarsson screamer earned a draw at Blackburn before a home win in the replay with Leon Best, now fully restored to fan favouritism after terrace taunts, scoring the only goal.

That set up a tie with Chelsea and easily the biggest day for the club both since relegation and at their new Ricoh Arena home. A full house and terrestrial TV audience saw the Premier League side ease to victory but home fans hoped the springboard was there for more such days to follow.

City`s season alas died a death in the final ten games, only a David Bell wonder goal providing any kind of positive note as Coleman`s side finished in 17th place.