UEFA have banned Manchester City from the Champions League for the next two seasons.
The Premier League champions have also been fined 30 million euros for what European football’s governing body say are ‘serious breaches’ of their club licensing and Financial Fair Play regulations which they committed by ‘overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016’.
In a stunning move, Uefa also said City failed to co-operate with an investigation into the matter launched by its Club Financial Control Body.
Manchester City have been banned from the Champions League for the next two seasons
Uefa launched a probe after documents obtained by a hacker and published in German media suggested the club had falsely inflated sponsorship deals with firms with firms linked to their Abu Dhabi ownership in an alleged attempt to circumvent Uefa’s FFP rules.
City, who can appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, have always denied the allegations.
A statement from City read: ‘Manchester City is disappointed but not surprised by today’s announcement by the UEFA Adjudicatory Chamber. 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 a statement City said that they are ‘disappointed but not surprised’ by UEFA’s decision
‘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.’
The Uefa statement added: ‘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.’