For 34 consecutive seasons from 1967 to 2001, Coventry City played in the top tier of English soccer. It was a Premier League original, and nearly lasted a decade in the rebranded first division.
Sixteen years after its relegation from the top flight, Coventry is wallowing away in League Two, England’s fourth tier. Its 30,000-plus-seat stadium is regularly three-quarters empty. And despite a strong start to the season, it reached a new low on Tuesday.
Coventry lost 1-0 to 23rd-place Forest Green, and one of the 6,366 supporters in attendance was so frustrated by the performance that he decided it was necessary to air his grievances to the players:
With Forest Green maintaining possession in the corner, the fan sauntered onto the pitch, then made a move toward the ball. At that point, the referee stopped the game. But amazingly, no stewards were on hand to step in.
So the fan had a go at the players, who tried to restrain him. He fought back, then walked off pounding his chest to a round of applause from the sparse crowd. After he climbed back over the barrier that separates field and stands, the reception from the steward was remarkably polite.
Perhaps she was frustrated by the performance too. The 1-0 loss extended Coventry’s scoreless run to 351 minutes.