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Into the Football League; 1920s.

WHEN the First World War ended City applied for election to the Football League. Backed by the wealth of tobacco magnate David Cooke, who had pumped a considerable sum of money into the club since his election to the board in 1909, Coventry's wish was granted, and the first official season after the war saw Coventry playing in Division Two.

The first match against Tottenham on August 30 1919 pointed the way towards the rest of that historic first league campaign. Coventry lost 5-0, and it would be Christmas Day before they won their first match, beating Stoke in their 20th game of the season.

The Bantams beat Bury in their last match of the season to avoid seeking re-election, but it was later discovered that the club had bribed the Bury players to lose and Coventry chairman David Cooke, manager Harry Pollitt and captain George Chaplin were all banned from football for life.

Coventry just avoided relegation in the following two seasons and the directors decided to update the clubs image. The traditional blue and white shirts were replaced by a new kit of green and red halves mirroring the civic colours, but Coventry were relegated from Division Two in 1925, and the kit was changed back to blue and white.

After one season in Division Three North the club were switched to Division Three South but their fortunes did not improve. In 1926 Scotsman James Kerr was appointed manager and brought in virtually a new team; it was a disaster and he lasted only 18 months. His replacement James McIntyre achieved two top-half finishes but fell out with the board.

The 1920's were a miserable period for the club, with five different boards of directors and eight managers. That would all change in the 1930s as the club entered a golden period of stability and success.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Aug 12, 2008
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