'Record bids' - why Mark Robins is 'fed up' & set to get tough on Coventry City's transfer stance

Mark Robins has outlined Coventry City’s transfer stance heading into what he hopes to be a busy and exciting summer of strengthening to take the club to the next level and be more competitive in terms of staying the distance next season.

The Sky Blues came up short this term due to a lack in depth amid key injuries as the team attempted to push for success on two fronts; going for a late charge for the play-offs and progressing to within a penalty shoot out of the FA Cup Final. And after the 2023/24 campaign came to a disappointing close with a 2-1 CBS Arena defeat to QPR, Robins began looking forward to continuing his building programme in the forthcoming window.

Asked if he has an idea of how many new players he would like to recruit, he simply said, “yes,” without giving anything away. The club is set to lose at least three out of contract players in Liam Kelly, Callum O’Hare and Simon Moore, while season-long loan defender Luis Binks is due to return to his parent club Bologna.

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As for keeping hold of the club’s most saleable assets, the likes of Ben Sheaf and strikers Ellis Simms and Haji Wright – both of whom have 19 goals apiece – the manager insisted: “We’re in a strong position from that perspective so if anyone were to go it would take record bids. We don’t want to sell anyone, that’s the stance. We want to keep everyone together and build.”

Robins then revealed his intention to start getting tough in the transfer market, insisting that he won’t signing any players unless they’re going to be fully committed to the Sky Blues and prepared to stay the distance and help the club achieve their ambitions of promotion.

“I am fed up of people coming in and... If people want to come in and use us as a stepping stone then nah,” he warned. “I am looking for people who, like Kels (Liam Kelly), and I said it in the dressing room, who came in and said ‘this is my home, this is what I am doing and I am going to help this club get to where it wants to get to.’

“And whilst he never set out to stay for seven years, because I don’t think he’d have ever thought that in his wildest dreams, as I never did. But ultimately there’s a player there who bought into it, mind, body and soul, and that’s what I am looking for because that’s the way you are going to take it to the next level; not because people come in and try and get what they can and clear off at the first opportunity. It’s not ideal and you can’t build anything like that.”

He added: “I think really you have to look at it because if you’re a trading club, which every club has to be, then it has to be done methodically and in a way that is sustainable and helps you become sustainable. And that’s the ultimate aim of any football club, I suppose. And whilst there are things that you want to have strict control over, there are human elements to take into consideration but, ultimately, we want to go for it, really go for it and build something that everyone is really proud of. And every transfer window gives you a chance. And I am excited about it.”

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