Coventry United Ladies Football Club will be placed in voluntary liquidation, directors have confirmed.
The club, founded in 2013, turned professional for the 2021-22 season and sit 11th of 12 teams in the Women’s Championship.
The club said in a statement it could not offer more detail “at this point”.
Club captain Katie Wilkinson told 5 Live Drive: “The girls are gutted, angry, upset and still in shock. They feel lost right now.”
Wilkinson said that the players were due to have training on Thursday morning but were told it was cancelled and instead had join a zoom call at 10am the same day.
“We were read a statement from the owner and that was it. Coventry United no longer exists, your contracts are ripped up, you aren’t getting paid in December and you no longer have a club to play for,” Wilkinson added.
Goalkeeper Olivia Clark tweeted: “To come into work and to find out that you no longer have the job that you’ve always dreamed of is heartbreaking.”
Wilkinson tweeted: “We had absolutely no indication that the club were in such financial difficulty and it just feels so cruel that at what should be one of the happiest times of the year, our livelihoods, our financial security and our club has been taken away from us just two days before Christmas.
“What’s hard to swallow right now is that I know many of my team-mates have sacrificed amazing jobs, careers, homes, families and more to become a full-time professional footballer for Coventry United.”
Defender Holly Chandler posted: “Sometimes life is filled with things outside your control! I’m heartbroken.
“Thank you for making my dream of being a professional footballer come true. I’ve made the best memories and friends.”
Manchester City and England defender Alex Greenwood said she was “absolutely gutted” for Coventry’s players, adding: “The sacrifices these girls make to become professional footballers to be told halfway through a season you no longer have a job, or a club, is simply not good enough!!!”
Stoke City Women, who currently play in the National League North, have shown their support for the club by inviting players and staff of Coventry United to train with them following the liquidation.
The Midlands club posted on Twitter that “during the tough times, we should all come together to support each other.”
In response to the help offered by other clubs, Wilkinson said: “The women’s football community is amazing because you know that through hard times, you always come together. The messages of support have been unbelievable over the past couple of days and have kept our heads high.”