Watford manager Valerien Ismael heavily criticised referee David Webb after his side’s thrilling 3-3 draw against Coventry, describing him as the 12th man for the hosts.

The Sky Blues were awarded a controversial penalty after 20 minutes with Watford defender Ryan Porteous adjudged to have handled the ball.

Despite Matt Godden’s spot-kick being saved by Daniel Bachmann, Ismael did not hold back and felt his side were playing the game a man down.

“It’s a very good performance, especially when you play against 12 men with the referee,” he said.

“We had meetings with the referees before the season and they showed us exactly the same situation Ryan Porteous was in and they told us it won’t be a penalty.

“What is the rule? His arm is against his body so it can’t be a penalty. It’s very difficult to accept this but we fought well.

“The referee helped Coventry very strongly but we have a lot of positives, we scored three goals.”

Watford opened the scoring through Mileta Rajovic which was then cancelled out by a stunning free-kick from Milan van Ewijk.

A Matheus Martins goal and a second from Rajovic had Watford ahead twice more, but an own goal from Wesley Hoedt and a late strike from Godden secured a point for Coventry.

Despite not being able to hold on to multiple leads, the Watford boss remained positive.

“Compliments to the players, I think that’s a great reaction following the two games we lost,” he continued.

“We come to a very tough away game at Coventry and I think naturally we were strong. Until the second goal when we conceded on our own.

“But we came back into the game and showed great mentality. We scored a great goal and played great football and we wanted to have that bravery in our game.

“The attitude of the players was really good and we continue to move forward now and adjust the mistakes.”

Coventry manager Mark Robins recognised the mistakes that his side made but could not fault their bravery.

“There were too many decisions that we made that were wrong, but there were so many we made that were right,” he said.

“Defensively we got one or two things wrong. We became too open and ended up coming out when we shouldn’t have.

“Knowing that that’s the way they play, they try and suck you out to create space. They have got quality and they are rapid.

“If you want to sit in against them then fine, but you’re not going anywhere and they will pin you in.

“I thought we were good, I thought we were brave and went after the game all the time. We just got things wrong defensively.”

Last season both sides also shared the spoils in another thrilling encounter that finished 2-2, and Robins was excited by the threat Coventry posed this time.

“We created some brilliant chances, the football was scintillating and the crowd were magnificent and got behind us,” he continued.

“We’ve come back three times, but we’ve got to be a little bit more confident. Other than that we look at a real threat.

“Today has been a really difficult game but it’s the same as we had last year, we get a point.”

Coventry came from behind three times to draw 3-3 in a remarkable encounter with Watford.

Mileta Rajovic’s opener was brilliantly cancelled out by Milan van Ewijk to leave the score 1-1 at half-time.

Matheus Martins and a second from Rajovic had Watford ahead twice in the second half, but Wesley Hoedt’s own goal and Matt Godden’s late strike salvaged a point for the Sky Blues.

The game was end to end from the off with an entertaining start from both sides.

The opener nearly came after 20 minutes when Coventry were controversially awarded a penalty with Ryan Porteous harshly adjudged to have handled the ball. Watford were reprieved when Godden’s shot was saved by Daniel Bachmann.

The Hornets then made it 1-0 as Rajovic poked home Tom Ince’s cross from the right-hand side.

However, The Sky Blues hit back before the break with a sensational 30-yard free-kick from Van Ewijk into the bottom left corner.

Shortly after the restart, Watford regained the lead with Martins handed a clear run down the left-hand side before curling into the opposite corner.

After 63 minutes Coventry were gifted an own goal to equalise after a dreadful back pass from Hoedt ended up in the back of the net.

Another error from Watford almost put Coventry ahead, but Haji Wright ran into trouble.

More slack defending, this time from Coventry, saw Vakoun Bayo get onto the end of a back-pass and square for Rajovic to net his second.

The Sky Blues equalised in the 87th minute as Godden thumped home a cross from Wright to atone for his earlier miss from the spot.

The result leaves both clubs with just one victory apiece from their first five Championship games.

Sunderland manager Tony Mowbray is still waiting for his attack to fire this season after they ground out a goalless draw at Coventry.

Already without long-term casualty Ross Stewart, the Black Cats were also shorn of the injured Patrick Roberts, with Mowbray continuing to mend and make do with 17-year-old Jobe Bellingham leading the line.

Mowbray is hoping he will be able to bring in a striker before the transfer window closes on Friday in order to add a cutting edge to a side that frequently dominates possession.

In terms of chances created, it was Coventry who shaded matters and it required several good saves from Sunderland goalkeeper Anthony Patterson to preserve a point for the visitors.

Mowbray said: “The game panned out a little bit differently to what I thought.

“I thought we would come here and dominate possession, like we did last year against them, and they were good first half with the ball.

“I was disappointed at half-time and we readjusted a few things and I thought we were better in the second half.

“We got into some good positions and just the final ball wasn’t quite there today, as we can say in most of the games this season.

“The first three games we averaged 68 per cent possession and we got in behind teams so many times, but we couldn’t find the pass to put the ball into the back of the net.

“It was a bit like that in the second half today and yet you could always feel Coventry’s threat.

“They obviously played two strikers and a 10, they’re a menace and I thought the concentration was good defensively.”

The best chance of the first half came Coventry’s way after 44 minutes when Ellis Simms went through, only for Patterson to save well with his legs.

Sunderland looked bright after the restart and forced Ben Wilson into action twice in a matter of moments as he parried Dan Neil’s effort before also saving Dennis Cirkin’s follow-up.

Kasey Palmer then tried to force the issue for the hosts with a good run into the area, but his tame effort was comfortably saved by Patterson.

The clearest chance for either team to win it came in the 79th minute when Coventry debutant Yasin Ayari played in fellow substitute Haji Wright, who was also denied by the impressive Patterson.

Coventry boss Mark Robins said: “Across the backline, I thought we were outstanding.

“When we needed to, we threw bodies in front of it – I think Milan (Van Ewijk) has had his best game, Jay Dasilva has been really good today, Kyle McFadzean was a joke throwing himself in front of things.

“Then on the flip side of it, we’ve played some really good football.

“We got through them, we got into wide areas, they sat deep and tried to play on the counter-attack against us – they had three players there to try and break out at any given moment, and that’s why they’re dangerous.

“They dropped bodies in, we tried to open them up and if we don’t get it right because there’s no space, it means that as soon as we turn it over, they’re on a counter.

“That put us on the back foot in terms of coming out and being really aggressive.”

Coventry and Sunderland had to settle for a point as two of last season’s Championship play-off semi-finalists played out a 0-0 draw at the Coventry Building Society Arena.

It was a point that is likely to be more welcomed by the Black Cats as they continued to recover from losing their first two games of the season.

Sunderland’s Anthony Patterson was the goalkeeper who was called upon more often as the Sky Blues, still adjusting to the loss of key players during the summer, made it three games unbeaten.

Sunderland began brightly, with Bradley Dack miscuing wide after working his way into a good position before Trai Hume launched a long-range effort off target.

There were no clear openings, however, with the final pass lacking from both teams, although Kasey Palmer’s through ball meant for Matty Godden required Patterson to quickly come off his line and gather.

A ricochet from Ben Sheaf’s shot then presented half an opening for Godden, but he could not get any power on his effort and Patterson saved easily.

It was one of the few occasions either goalkeeper was called upon as chances remained at a premium, with defences very much on top.

An opening was finally fashioned by Coventry in the 44th minute when the ball was played through for Ellis Simms and the former Everton striker was denied by the legs of Patterson.

Both sides were hoping for more after a tepid first half, however, and it was Sunderland who made a lively start to the second as they worked Coventry keeper Ben Wilson for the first time after 49 minutes.

Dan Neil’s shot from just outside the area was parried out as far as Dennis Cirkin, who also found his route to goal blocked by Wilson.

Palmer then tried to force a breakthrough for the Sky Blues at the other end, but his shot on the turn from the edge of the box never looked like finding the target.

There was a much better tempo to the game now, though, and Palmer looked sharp again during a good run into the Sunderland area, only to shoot tamely at Patterson.

A raft of substitutions from both sides unfortunately hurt the flow, but Sheaf tried to seize the initiative for Coventry as he snatched a shot from outside the area wide.

Two of the Sky Blues’ substitutes then combined for the clearest opening of the match after 79 minutes as debutant Yasin Ayari, on loan from Brighton, played the ball through for Haji Wright, who was denied by a fine save from Patterson.

Mark Robins expects Coventry to be Championship promotion contenders again this season once his new signings hit the ground running.

The Sky Blues were left frustrated by Swansea in their third Championship game of the season as the sides played out a 1-1 draw in south Wales.

Record-signing Haji Wright spurned a number of chances in the first half before Matty Godden gave the Sky Blues a lead, but Jerry Yates earned a point for the hosts.

Coventry lost several key players – including Viktor Gyokeres and Gustavo Hamer – following last season’s play-off final defeat to Luton, with Wright, Ellis Simms, Milan van Ewijk, Tatsuhiro Sakamoto, Bobby Thomas, Jay Dasilva and Joel Latibeaudiere among those to join the club this summer.

And Robins believes his new-look team can ruffle plenty of feathers once the squad has had sufficient time to gel.

“I think we’re going to be good, but at the moment we’re just working our way through,” he said.

“Everybody needs to be patient. We’ve got brilliant supporters and they understand.

“But we’ve got to pick up points while we’re going, that’s the key.

“When we’ve worked together a little bit longer, I think you’ll see a different side with more confidence, more fluidity and hopefully more goals and more chances.”

United States international Wright was off target with a number of efforts in the first half as the hosts ended the contest with more shots on goal than Coventry.

But Robins still felt his troops deserved to clinch all three points.

“We should have won but you can only win games if you defend properly,” he added.

“We didn’t readjust quickly enough after we scored. The fact we conceded more or less straight away is really disappointing.

“The determination to try and play through them was there. I just think we tired and the fact I’ve not got the players I need to change things took its toll really.”

Swansea boss Michael Duff praised goalscorer Yates for earning the hosts a point.

The striker joined from Blackpool in the summer and has now netted in each of his two home appearances for the club.

“The one thing he does do is pop up with a goal – that’s two in two,” said Duff.

“He lives for goals and he gives you everything, whether he scores or not.”

Despite failing to win any of his first three Championship matches as boss, Duff remains confident that his early struggles at former clubs Cheltenham and Barnsley prove the Swans need to stay patient.

“The same things happened at my last two clubs,” he said.

“I didn’t win a game for 10 games at Cheltenham, 18 months later we won the league.

“The same thing happened at Barnsley. We were eighth or ninth in the league for the first three months, then we were the most in-form team in the country from November on.

“It’s never going to happen overnight. I want to win as much as anyone else. I also understand there’s a process.”

Swansea summer signing Jerry Yates bagged his second goal of the campaign to earn his new side a 1-1 draw with Coventry in the Championship.

The visiting Sky Blues were wasteful in the first half but took the lead through what was one of their only two shots on target in the game as Matty Godden netted in the 39th minute.

But Yates, who arrived from Blackpool for a reported £2.5million this summer, equalised two minutes later with his second goal in as many home appearances for the Swans.

Having been lacklustre for the majority of their 3-2 defeat at West Brom a week earlier, Swansea boss Michael Duff urged his side to play with more zip against Coventry.

The hosts certainly took his words on board and started on the front foot as Jay Fulton drilled just wide after neat play from Joel Piroe.

Coventry soon settled and created openings of their own as club-record £7.7m signing Haji Wright was off target with three efforts in the space of seven minutes, the last of which fizzed inches wide of Carl Rushworth’s goal.

Mark Robins will undoubtedly have been pleased with the control his side had on the game as Coventry’s sharpness continued to pose problems.

But Swansea registered the game’s first effort on target just before the half-hour mark. A corner from Charlie Patino – on his first start since joining on loan from Arsenal – found Harry Darling who headed straight at Ben Wilson.

Coventry took the lead six minutes before half-time as the lively Tatsuhiro Sakamoto squared to Wright who teed up Godden to rifle home his third goal of the season.

It sparked wild scenes of celebration in the away end, but the Sky Blues were pegged back within two minutes.

Harrison Ashby latched on to Darling’s ball over the top on the right flank before crossing to Yates who nodded over Wilson to ensure the score was level at the break.

The second half proved to be a slow burner until Coventry duo Bobby Thomas and Kyle McFadzean headed over from corners in quick succession.

Piroe and Yates then combined on the right to send Fulton into the visitors’ box, but the midfielder could only drill straight at Wilson from an acute angle.

Duff sent on Liam Cullen, Joe Allen, Azeem Abdulai and Josh Ginnelly late on while Wright was replaced by Ellis Simms as the contest remained finely poised.

But Coventry were unable to trouble goalkeeper Rushworth following a barrage of set-plays as they remained without a win at Swansea since 1981.

Manager Mark Robins believes Coventry are a club with a new lease of life despite the loss of key players in the summer after they impressively picked up their first win of the season against Middlesbrough.

Last season was the Sky Blues’ most successful in a number of years, following Doug King’s takeover of the club.

It ultimately ended with the heartbreak of defeat on penalties against Luton in the Championship play-off final at Wembley, a long-awaited return to the Premier League so near and yet so far.

They have since seen Viktor Gyokeres and Gustavo Hamer depart for Sporting Lisbon and Sheffield United respectively, but their display against the team they beat in the play-off semi-finals in May suggested a bright future.

Robins said: “It was an important game today for the players and for the supporters as well, not least because we’ve got a load of new players in.

“That feeling of winning at home is really important, the dressing rooms have changed – the owner has spent a load of money on the stadium, on the pitch, in the changing room area.

“It’s absolutely fantastic, it feels so much better, the training ground pitches have been done, so the whole club feels like there’s a breath of fresh air running through it and that’s brilliant.

“The two players that have left have obviously given us a headache but also an opportunity and that’s been backed by Doug as well.

“Thankfully we are in the throes of a recruitment drive and now we’ve lost Gus we’re looking at what we can do next to fill the void but also to give us the squad depth that we crave.”

Coventry were ahead after 11 minutes when Josh Eccles’ shot deflected into the path of Matty Godden, who instinctively finished into the bottom corner.

Middlesbrough were poor in the first half, but enjoyed a good spell after the break, with Isaiah Jones shooting into the side netting before Sammy Silvera somehow blazed Morgan Rogers’ cross over from close range.

It was one of Robins’ new recruits who doubled the Sky Blues’ lead in the 70th minute as USA international Haji Wright smashed in his first goal for the club following Kasey Palmer’s corner.

An excellent afternoon for the hosts was rounded off in stoppage time when Boro defender Darragh Lenihan deflected Godden’s cross into his own net.

Middlesbrough boss Michael Carrick, who looks set to lose 29-goal top scorer from last season Chuba Akpom in the near future, said: “It obviously wasn’t a 3-0 game.

“We’ve done a number of good things during the game, they’re obviously a good team, it was a tight game for spells, and they had a little bit extra in the end.

“Obviously, goals change games and we weren’t quite able to take the chances we created.

“We’ve got to be better but at the same point the first one was a deflection that fell to him (Godden), the third goal was a deflection and the corner’s the corner we need to defend better.

“There’s a balance between judging a game and knowing where we’re at and being disappointed and knowing where we need to improve, but at the same point the bigger picture is it’s a long

“We’ve got long enough to put things right.”

USA international Haji Wright opened his account for Coventry as they beat Middlesbrough 3-0 to pick up their first win of the season at the Coventry Building Society Arena.

It represented the perfect start to life without Gustavo Hamer for the Sky Blues after one of the key figures of their run to last season’s Championship play-off final departed for Sheffield United on Friday night.

It was Hamer’s goal that defeated Middlesbrough in the semi-finals of those play-offs back in May and this was another day where Michael Carrick’s side fired blanks as they fell to a second straight loss in the new campaign.

A perfectly timed challenge by Coventry centre-back Bobby Thomas on Morgan Rogers got the home crowd on their feet in the early stages, after Hayden Hackney’s tame effort had been blocked.

The noise levels only increased when the Sky Blues took the lead in the 11th minute, with Josh Eccles’ shot deflecting into the path of Matty Godden, who steered the ball into the bottom corner.

With the hosts’ tails up, Jay Dasilva tried to add a quick second but could not direct his effort from outside the area on target.

Godden then almost doubled up when his low curler had to be pushed out by Middlesbrough goalkeeper Seny Dieng, with Milan van Ewijk putting the follow-up wide.

Middlesbrough struggled to find a reply, with the sight of Coventry skipper Kyle McFadzean easily brushing off the advancing Sammy Silvera summing up the balance of play.

Ellis Simms had a chance to put the Sky Blues two ahead when he was picked out in the area by Eccles, only to shoot straight at Dieng, but it was a deserved lead for the home side at half-time.

It was almost wiped out just over three minutes into the second half, however, when Rogers shot wide after a dangerous run that took him into the 18-yard box.

That moment began a much better spell for ‘Boro, with Isaiah Jones shooting into the side netting before Silvera should have equalised when he blazed Rogers’ cut-back over from close range.

Finnish striker Marcus Forss was brought on by Carrick and almost struck with his first touch when he poked Paddy McNair’s cross straight at Coventry ‘keeper Ben Wilson.

Wright had also been introduced by this point and it was he who doubled Coventry’s lead in the 70th minute, against the run of play, when he blasted home after Kasey Palmer’s corner was cleared into his path.

A terrific afternoon for the Sky Blues was then embroidered in stoppage time as Godden was found in space out on the right and his cross was deflected into his own net by ‘Boro defender Darragh Lenihan.

Wimbledon boss Johnnie Jackson praised the structure of his side after Ryan McLean’s late strike saw the League Two team down Coventry and reach round two of the EFL Cup.

Championship Coventry were ahead inside 20 minutes, Matty Godden converting from the spot after Joe Lewis chopped down Haji Wright in the box.

And that had looked enough to claim victory, until two late strikes from the Dons turned the contest on its head, Omar Bugiel with the equaliser before McLean’s winner.

“It’s early days, obviously, but any successful team has that base of solidity and defensive structure and I think we looked like that,” said Jackson.

“Coventry had their moments – they’ve got quality players – but if we want to do anything, you got to have that base.

“We’re trying to build a squad where you’ve got competition for places and you’ve got people that are tough to leave out.

“But, when you’re looking behind you to make changes, you know they’re going to come on and have a positive influence on the game.”

Meanwhile, Sky Blues boss Mark Robins rued silly mistakes as his makeshift side snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.

He added: “I don’t think we deserved anything – we could have won if we’d done things right, but we didn’t.

“We didn’t pick the right passes out, we went too long at times and it was just unlike us. Really, they should have been a couple of goals up before the penalty, so we’re a little bit lucky coming in 1-0 up.

“So we speak about that at half time and how we can be better and we end up looking poor in the second half too.

“It’s a new team so I’ve got to be careful what I say; I’m making substitutions for physical reasons rather than tactical reasons at the moment because I’m trying to get everyone fit.”

Ryan McLean’s injury-time strike completed a remarkable turnaround for AFC Wimbledon as they stunned Championship visitors Coventry 2-1.

Mark Robins’ side enjoyed plenty of the ball in south London and deservedly led through a Matty Godden penalty.

Despite creating a number of excellent opportunities, they were dealt two sucker punches right at the death, Omar Bugiel lashing home an equaliser four minutes from time, before McLean’s calm finish sent Plough Lane into raptures.

They should have been ahead within 90 seconds, however, James Tilley inexplicably side-footing wide from eight yards having been found by the weaving Aron Sasu.

Godden and the busy Tatsuhiro Sakamoto were then denied in quick succession by Nik Tzanev in the Dons goal, before Joe Lewis chopped down Haji Wright – Godden making no mistake.

Godden, Gustavo Hamer and Jake Bidwell continued to work the Wimbledon keeper, though the pick was a brilliant reaction save from less than a yard from Ellis Simms.

And just as it seemed Coventry had got away with their profligacy, Johnnie Jackson’s men turned the tie around.

McLean’s cross was met perfectly by Bugiel, striking home having timed his run into the penalty area superbly, with McLean himself showing coolness of mind to turn in a cross deep into added-on time; a remarkable way in which to score his first goal in professional football.

Enzo Maresca says he has urged Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall to score more goals after he netted twice in Leicester’s comeback win over Coventry in his first Sky Bet Championship game in charge.

The former Manchester City coach was satisfied with the result, which saw Dewsbury-Hall score twice in 10 minutes late on to seal victory after Coventry captain Kyle McFadzean had put Mark Robins’ side ahead early in the second half.

Maresca revealed he had urged Dewsbury-Hall to get into the opponents’ area more.

The 24-year-old midfielder only scored twice as the Foxes were relegated from the Premier League last season.

The result was a headed equaliser and a spectacular winner with three minutes to go.

Maresca said: “At the beginning when I came in, I checked the numbers of the players and I told him he has better quality to be able to score more and make more assists.

“The only way to do it is to arrive more often in the box. Kiernan scored here because he was there in the area.

“We are happy because he scored and we won and that’s the most important thing.”

Maresca also pointed to the fact that his team maintained momentum until the latter stages, despite Coventry’s constant threat.

The Italian coach said: “I told the players that Coventry was a team that almost won promotion in May. We needed to be mentally strong.

“So to be 1-0 down and then win the game, the guys showed a lot of great effort.

“We conceded a lot of goals from set pieces last season, I knew this before I came. We conceded again here and it was not easy to come back for us.”

Asked if he was concerned about the number of chances Coventry created, Maresca responded: ‘I’m always concerned. The feeling of winning was unbelievable, but we have to improve.”

Coventry manager Mark Robins predicted that Dewsbury-Hall will will be one of the top players in the Championship this season.

But he admitted there was a feeling of what might have been had his side taken more than one chance after creating so many openings.

Robins said: “If we’d taken one more, we might have won by two or three. We’re trying to be on the front foot and carrying a threat is something that’s really important to us.

“We had chances to score, but such is life, we’ve not taken them.

“I think Dewsbury-Hall is going to be one of the best players at this level. Someone also told me Leicester had £100million worth of talent on the bench – which is nice.

“It’s always disappointing to lose especially from a winning position but when you look at the quality of Leicester, there’s a lot of Manchester City in the movements.”

Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall scored twice in 10 minutes to inspire a late comeback as Enzo Maresca began his reign as Leicester manager with a 2-1 victory over Coventry.

Leicester are aiming to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking under former Manchester City coach Maresca.

But they were made to work hard by a Coventry side who could have had more than the one goal they scored when skipper Kyle McFadzean’s close-range header gave them a deserved lead.

With Leicester struggling for a foothold in the game, midfielder Dewsbury-Hall equalised with a header before netting a spectacular winning goal.

Both sides named four debutants in the starting line ups following their summer transfer activity; but Coventry manager Mark Robins chose to leave new record signing Haji Wright, a USA international, on the bench after completing his £7.7million move on Friday. He would make an appearance with 19 minutes to go.

Maresca gave the Leicester captain’s armband to veteran striker Jamie Vardy.

The game was played in front of a sell-out crowd at the King Power Stadium, and had the atmosphere of a Premier League game.

Robins has rebuilt his squad with nine new signings following their Championship play-off final defeat to Luton last May but the Sky Blues showed Leicester they were not going to have it all their own way.

Kasey Palmer was a threat for Coventry and, after 26 minutes, he found space 20 yards from goal and produced a shot which drifted just over the crossbar.

Leicester came more into the game as the half drew on and former Coventry loanee Callum Doyle saw a header blocked at the near post from Stephy Mavididi’s corner.

Palmer continued to cause problems and it took an excellent interception from Harry Winks to stop him getting a shot in on goal.

Leicester youth product Kasey McAteer was put through by Ricardo Pereira before the break but he was denied by Coventry goalkeeper Ben Wilson.

Coventry should have scored straight after the break when Ellis Simms was put clear but took his shot first time and sliced wide.

Robins’ side went ahead after 47 minutes when Gustavo Hamer delivered a corner to the near post and McFadzean glanced home from close range.

Coventry then created a string of chances, with Leicester’s new goalkeeper Mads Hermansen twice saving from Matt Godden.

Leicester equalised after 77 minutes when substitute Dennis Praet delivered a cross into the Coventry area where Dewsbury-Hall was on hand to head past Wilson.

Coventry almost regained the lead when Hall broke clear and saw his shot deflected on to the crossbar.

But with three minutes left, Dewsbury-Hall scored the winner. He played a one-two with Mavididi before finding the net with a powerful left-foot drive.

Sweden forward Viktor Gyokeres has completed his move from Coventry to Sporting Lisbon.

City did not disclose the fee received for the 25-year-old, but said it was a club record. A percentage of the fee will be due to his former club Brighton.

Reports have suggested Sporting will pay in the region of £20million for Gyokeres, with Coventry’s previous record the £13million received when Robbie Keane joined Inter Milan in 2000.

Gyokeres scored 23 goals in 50 appearances last term to help Coventry to the Championship play-off final, where they lost to Luton on penalties.

Gyokeres, capped 14 times by Sweden, joined Coventry from Brighton on loan in January 2021 before making the move permanent in that summer, signing a three-year contract. In all, he scored 43 goals in 116 appearances for the Sky Blues.

Mark Robins has already secured a replacement for Gyokeres, having signed Ellis Simms from Everton for £3.5million last week.

Coventry executive chairman Doug King said: “After a long discussion, we have finally concluded a deal that is right for all parties concerned and confirm the transfer of Viktor Gyokeres to Sporting Lisbon.

“Viktor has made a huge impression in his time with us and leaves many great memories and we wish him every success with his new club.

“We have already been active in the market as we rebuild for the new season and will continue to recruit selectively but these funds will also support the extensive infrastructure projects the club is undertaking.”

Ross County have secured the return of left-back Josh Reid on a three-year contract.

Reid left County for Coventry in January 2021 after playing 24 times for the Dingwall side’s first team.

But the 21-year-old only made two appearances in England, one for the Sky Blues in the League Cup and one on loan with Stevenage.

Manager Malky Mackay told County’s website: “I am delighted to see Josh return to the club, he knows the club and area very well and is a player who has had recent international experience with the Scotland Under-21s.”

Tributes have been paid to former Coventry and Wolves striker Cedric Roussel following his death on Saturday.

Belgium international Roussel, who was 45, joined the Sky Blues from Gent in 1999, initially on a loan deal, and played alongside Robbie Keane in the Premier League.

After some injury problems, Roussel joined Wolves in 2001, where he spent 18 months before returning to Belgium on loan to hometown club Mons.

Roussel, capped three times by the national team, also had spells at Genk, Rubin Kazan in Russia as well as Standard Liege before another move back to Mons later in his career.

“Our legend and ambassador Cedric Roussel passed away this Saturday,” Mons said in a statement on the club’s Twitter feed.

“The RAEC Mons family is devastated by this news and offers its most sincere condolences to Cedric’s family and loved ones. You marked our history.”

A statement from Coventry on Twitter read: “Coventry City are deeply saddened to learn of the death of our former striker Cedric Roussel, at the age of just 45.

“Cedric played 43 games for the Sky Blues from 1999-2001, scoring 11 goals. Our condolences are with his family and friends at this very sad time.”

Wolves said in a statement on the club’s Twitter feed: “Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Cedric Roussel. Our former player has passed away aged just 45.”

Mons are planning a tribute to Roussel, who is reported to have suffered a cardiac arrest, during the match against Charleroi on Sunday.

The Belgium Football Association also passed on condolences to Roussel’s family and friends.

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