'Man City FFP breach' read the headlines all week long as Pep Guardiola's Manchester City were caught flouting UEFA's Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules. Following an investigation into their finances, Manchester City were reportedly handed a two-year ban from the Champions League along with a £25 million fine from UEFA. The Man City ban evoked a widespread feeling of dismay and resentment among Man City fans with a large number of City fans reportedly singing "We'll see you in court" during the win against West Ham. However, one particular incident in the Man City ban saga left Pep Guardiola particularly perturbed.
Pep Guardiola repeatedly asserted that he would stay and fight at Manchester City come what may, even after the Man City FFP breach came to light. Earlier this week, his former club Barcelona reacted to the Man City ban in a press conference. Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu said, "I would like to thank UEFA regarding FFP, they've been doing fantastic work in the last couple of years. We have regular investigations and we have supported UEFA in everything it does in football." Pep Guardiola, however, did not take too kindly to those comments.
Guardiola on reports that Barca chairman Bartomeu had expressed support for City's CL ban: "Wait for the appeal. Don't talk too loud, because everybody is involved in situations sometimes."— Sam Lee (@SamLee) February 19, 2020
Speaking after the 2-0 win over West Ham United, Pep Guardiola addressed the Barcelona president's comments over the Man City FFP breach. The Spaniard said, " The people (at City) right now trust what they have done so that is what we are going to do. We're going to appeal and maybe it happens, but don't talk too loud, Barcelona. That is my advice because everybody is involved sometimes in situations. We are going to appeal and hopefully, in the future, we can play in the Champions League against Barcelona."
There have been fears that a number of stars like Raheem Sterling and Kevin de Bruyne could depart the Etihad following the Man City FFP breach. However, it now appears that Pep Guardiola will not leave the club even if the Champions League ban is upheld. Man City CEO Ferran Soriano informed the club's supporters that the club did nothing wrong and will do everything in their power to challenge the ban in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).