This was a match that Sporting needed to and wanted to win and by rights they should have had at least a point from this pulsating and exciting encounter.
New signing Kyle Turner started up front partnering Connor Collins and although it was not cold a strong gust blew across the pitch fluttering the two flags at the side of the pitch flying at half-mast in memory of those tragically killed in Paris.
Coventry were slightly quicker out of their blocks and Pierre Moudime had the first shot on the second minute after a good run down the right but it went well wide of the post.
Sporting though adequately matched their opponents with midfielders Reece Hewitt and Jack Wilson regularly finding their colleagues up front and it was Hewitt who came so close on 8 minutes when Richard Morris in the United goal took the sting out of his shot only for it to creep toward the goal line before being cleared by Moudime.
Hewitt though was luckier 8 minutes later when he hit a powerful angled shot from the right that took a deflection off one of the home defenders and ballooned over Morris into the corner of the net putting the Rouslers in front.
Given the heavy pitch, Sporting opted more for the long ball which was proving to be quite effective whilst Coventry made more use of their pacey wingers on the flanks but the nett effect was both sides cancelling each other out.
However with the game being quite fast and competitive and neither side wanting to concede even a throw-in, things boiled over on 37 minutes with the first of three fracas involving most of the 22 players and benches. Once Mr Martin had cooled things down football resumed with 3 yellow cards having been brandished.
United though finally got on to level terms just before the interval in somewhat controversial circumstances. Moudime looked to handle by the by-line but there was no flag and having controlled the ball, sent over a well-flighted cross to Matthew Brown who headed home past a helpless Josh Moreton.
The second half continued much as the first with each side creating good chances but nothing changing the scoreline. Dale Edwards replaced Sam Willis on 73 minutes and unfortunately for the youngster he got caught in possession five minutes later with Sporting on the attack. Joshua O'Grady who won the tackle sent the ball into the Sporting box but a poor clearance only went to Muziwandile Nduma who picked his spot and found the corner of the net giving his side the lead.
Cue for Sporting to up the tempo for the last few minutes with Edwards going wide a couple of minutes later and the away side having a good penalty appeal turned down. But it was United who gained a penalty on 84 minutes when Craig Jones was adjudged to have fouled O'Grady, who converted the spot kick himself.
For the last five minutes Sporting had the better of the play as they attempted to get back into the game and gained a deserved goal three minutes into added time when Richard Macauleigh and keeper Morris got into a mix up releasing the ball to Turner who scored off the post with an open goal available.
Before the final whistle there was enough time for one more fracas with Aaron Roberts for Sporting and Nduna getting yellow cards this time. However the clock ran out for Sporting before they could get the equaliser.
In his post match summary, manager Paul Smith said, "It was a good game that I think we should have won. I am very disappointed but sometimes you don't get what you deserve".
Coventry: Richard Morris, Pierre Moudime (Martin Hutchcox 86 mins), Steve Djedge (Ben Vallance 46 mins), Chris Cox (Capt.), Macauleigh Richards, Callum Burgess, Joshua O'Grady, Thomas Glasscoe, Matthew Brown, Brain Ndlovu (Gift Mussa 73 mins), Muziwandile Nduna.
Substitutes not used: Wendel Moyo, Jason Fox.
Goals: Brown (44 mins), Nduna (78 mins, penalty), O'Grady (83 mins - penalty).
Yellows: Cox (37 mins), Brown (42 mins), O'Grady (90 mins), Nduna (90+3 mins)
Sporting: Josh Moreton, Aaron Roberts, Brendan Kelly (Capt, James McKeon 85 mins), Simon Fitter, Craig Jones, Luke Dugmore (Ethan Hanks 85 mins), Sam Wills (Dale Edwards 73 mins), Reece Hewitt, Connor Collins, Kyle Turner, Jack Wilson.
Goals: Hewitt (16 mins), Turner (90+2 mins).
Substitutes not used: Sam Delaney, Sean Brain
Yellows: Wills (37 mins), Fitter (37 mins), Roberts (90+3 mins)
Referee: Mr L Martin (Birmingham)
Assistants: Mr S Aires (Rugby), Mr P Day (Rugby)
Weather: Windy, drizzle
Sporting MoM: Jack Wilson
Report: Phil Baker