UEFA: Manchester City banned from competing in the Champions League for two years (two seasons), and fined £24.9m (€30m) for “serious breaches” of UEFA’s Financial Fair Play and club licensing regulations.
UEFA bans Manchester City from the Champions League for two years with a fine of €30m
The Premier League side say they are “disappointed but not surprised” by the decision and described it as “prejudicial”
UEFA passed the punishment, which includes a €30 million fine (£25m/$33m), to the Premier League giants for breaching Financial Fair Play rules.
The Adjudicatory Chamber of the Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) found the Premier League champions guilty of serious breaches of the UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations.
This came after investigation, the Adjudicatory Chamber of UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) found Man City guilty of “overstating its sponsorship revenue” between 2012 and 2016.
The investigation started after a series of allegations published by German magazine Der Spiegel in November 2018, which drew on documents purportedly obtained by whistleblowers Football Leaks.
UEFA’s statement read: “The Adjudicatory Chamber, having considered all the evidence, has found that Manchester City Football Club committed serious breaches of the UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations by overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016.
“The Adjudicatory Chamber has also found that in breach of the regulations the Club failed to cooperate in the investigation of this case by the CFCB.
“The Adjudicatory Chamber has imposed disciplinary measures on Manchester City Football Club directing that it shall be excluded from participation in UEFA club competitions in the next two seasons (ie. the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons) and pay a fine of €30 million.”
Denying any wrong doing, Manchester City responded with a statement on their website, saying UEFA made the decision even before the investigation had started.
“Manchester City is disappointed but not surprised by today’s announcement by the UEFA Adjudicatory Chamber,” the statement said. “The Club has always anticipated the ultimate need to seek out an independent body and process to impartially consider the comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence in support of its position.
“In December 2018, the UEFA Chief Investigator publicly previewed the outcome and sanction he intended to be delivered to Manchester City, before any investigation had even begun. The subsequent flawed and consistently leaked UEFA process he oversaw has meant that there was little doubt in the result that he would deliver. The Club has formally complained to the UEFA Disciplinary body, a complaint which was validated by a CAS ruling.
“Simply put, this is a case initiated by UEFA, prosecuted by UEFA and judged by UEFA. With this prejudicial process now over, the Club will pursue an impartial judgment as quickly as possible and will therefore, in the first instance, commence proceedings with the Court of Arbitration for Sport at the earliest opportunity.”
Can fifth place qualify for Champions League?
If a club should finish in the top four (Manchester City) and their ban is upheld by CAS, it would mean a Champions League place would go to the team who finish fifth in the Premier League.
UEFA rule 4.08 states: “A club which is not admitted to the competition is replaced by the next best-placed club in the top domestic championship of the same association, provided the new club fulfils the admission criteria. In this case, the access list (see Annex A) is adjusted accordingly.”
Sheffield United are currently fifth in the Premier League table on 39 points, two points ahead of Tottenham who have a game in hand.
The origin of the Ban on Manchester city?
The ban on Man city did not come overnight. It is a result of a long-running dispute over UEFA’s financial fair play rules.
The real meaning of the rule is that “you can only spend what you earn”.
It was put in place to curb the spending of clubs who had rich owners. Putting in place a fair play setting for all clubs.
It all began when Michel Platini was the president of UEFA, worried that clubs like PSG and Manchester City had very rich owners who could suddenly pump huge amounts of money into their clubs and gain a competitive advantage, so they introduced these rules.
What Manchester City have been accused of doing by UEFA is ‘gaming the system’, inflating the amount of money they were bringing in from sponsorship deals so that they could show they were making more than they actually were, so they could spend more.
Man City have denied any wrongdoing whatsoever.
The investigation began when all the hacked emails of clubs and football agents by ‘Football Leaks’ ended up with a German magazine called Der Spiegel. Who went through all the emails and came up with the story accusing City of breaking FFP rules, deceiving UEFA.
The UEFA investigation which was led by former prime minister of Belgium, whom concluded that Manchester City were guilty of wrongdoing.
The case was then handed to the judges of UEFA’s Adjudicatory Chamber and they have come out and said the club should be banned from UEFA competitions for two seasons and be fined around £25m.
Is there a way out from the ban placed by UEFA on Manchester City ?
The ban on Manchester city came as a huge surprise for a lot of people. but this is by no means the end of this story.
Manchester City has some of the best sports lawyers in the world working on it. They will do everything possible to overturn the decision and get back into the Champions League.
There is still hope this could get overturned at CAS.