Sheffield offers hand of friendship to fans as Manchester ice hockey club collapses

Phoenix burns out
Phoenix burns out

Sheffield Steeldogs offered their support today after Manchester Phoenix suddenly dropped out of the EPL.

They issued a statement saying they "are saddened to hear" that potential new investors for Manchester Phoenix have decided not to invest in the Club and that with immediate effect it is withdrawing from the League.

They said: "This is a sad time for fans of the Club and British ice hockey in general.

"We understand that there will be many faithful Phoenix fans that are devastated at the loss of their team, many of whom have bought season tickets for this season and although we appreciate that we are not the Phoenix, we would like to honour any season tickets purchased for the 2016/17 season at the Steeldogs games for the remainder of the season.

"There has always been a great rivalry between the Steeldogs and the Phoenix but at times like these the hockey community come together.

"We may be a short journey across the Pennines but you are more than welcome to come and get your hockey fix with our team. There will be absolutely no charge to Manchester Phoenix season ticket holders at our home games. (Season tickets will need to be shown on the door.)

"If you are not a Phoenix season ticket holder but are a regular fan, if you attend any of our home games wearing a Phoenix shirt, a Concession rate will be offered to you."

Phoenix have not played in their home area since 2015 when the Elite League Manchester Storm were reformed to play at the Altrincham Ice Dome.

Playing games at Deeside and Blackpool were not conducive to bringing in new fans,

A Phoneix statement promised to pay outstanding wages to players.

"I am extremely saddened for the whole of the Phoenix community, but this decision has become inevitable," said owner Neil Morris.

"I'd like our fans to remember the great things the club has achieved, and the impact we've made on British ice hockey."