Manchester City have been handed a major setback after the club was banned by UEFA for two years. UEFA found Man City guilty of breaching the Financial Fair Play (FFP) guidelines. They have subsequently handed the club a Champions League ban and a fine of £25 million. Man City released a statement the same day, denying claims of any wrongdoings. The statement further read that the club plans to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) at the earliest.
Der Spiegel leaked documents that showed Man City deliberately inflating the financial values of its sponsorship deals, allowing them to spend more in the transfer market. While City showed exorbitantly high annual sponsorships, the documents revealed that Man City owner Sheikh Mansour funded the major proportion of its sponsorships himself.
It is reported that Man City have only nine days to file an appeal for their ban. The Athletic further outlined the argument Man City plan to use in their defence. The Athletic's report states that Man City have recorded the financial activities of each of their European rivals during the investigation period. It is believed that the club plans to use their findings during the hearing at CAS.
City have reportedly noted each of their rivals' expenditure in the transfer market as well as their funds from sponsors. While City have so far denied claims of any wrongdoings, the club plans to shed light on the activities of its rivals at the hearing.
Such an argument brings the dubious case of Paris Saint-Germain to the front. PSG, who are owned by Qatar Sports Investments, have been questioned several times for breaching the FFP regulations. PSG spent a reported €400 million on transfers to sign Neymar and Kylian Mbappe in 2017. While UEFA opened an investigation against the club, PSG were eventually acquitted from the FFP case.
It remains unknown what findings Man City plan to use in their defence. However, if these reports are to be believed, several other clubs with similar activities could be in line for massive punishments.
Raheem Sterling has become the first Manchester City player to publicly commit his future to the club, with the winger not wanting uncertainty going into the business end of the season.— Man City Xtra (@City_Xtra) February 16, 2020