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UEFA At It Again With Manchester City

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Blues And PSG Warned By Europe’s Governing Body Over FFP

Manchester City v Fulham FC - Premier League Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Manchester City, along with PSG, have again been warned by European football’s governing about their stance over breaking Financial Fair Play Rules.

According to the Daily Mail, UEFA are still to decide whether or not to open an investigation as to whether the blues broke FFP regulations following the football leaks reports towards the back end of 2018, and have issued another warning that no club is too powerful to be thrown out of European competition.

The Uefa committee reponsible for FFP wrote to City before Christmas inviting comment on allegations reported in the German magazine Der Spiegel that the club’s declarations in 2013-15 were “a web of lies.” However, it is though that the blues response has been very similar to the public response, stating the allegations were based on “hacked or stolen” emails, and challenged Uefa to support stronger protection against hacking.

In 2014, City were punished for breaking FFP rules, and accepted a fine, a transfger spending limit and a reduction of their Champions League squad for the following season, but they are likely to fight any further investigation launched by UEFA.

In December, the Manchester Evening News reported that UEFA did in fact shift the goalposts in order to avoid a protracted court battle and that the governing body had known all along about Football Leaks material, and therefore have no fresh information on which to base a further investigation.You can read the full article here.

It does seem to be taking UEFA an awfully long time to decide on their next course of action, considering president Aleksander Ceferin described the Leaks material as a ‘concrete case.’ The allegations were first made by Football Leaks over three months ago, and the continued delay gives the impression that UEFA are fighting to appease those that want to see the blues receive further punishment, while trying to avoid possible legal action that could reveal they knew all along exactly what the blues hierarchy had done.

The crux of the allegations is the size of City’s sponsorship deals, which UEFA said in 2014 they were unhappy with, which implies they feel had been inflated, yet no further action was taken. Just how much did UEFA know and what have they hidden themselves?

It is well known that City have made huge investments in the club, and teams such as Liverpool, Everton, Spurs etc, who have continually berated City for having what they call ‘oil money,’ haven’t exactly refused that cash when City have come knocking. Raheem Sterling, John Stones and Kyle Walker to name a few have made big money Premier League moves, while clubs on the continent, including Barcelona and Real Madrid have also benefitted from City’s wealth.

Off the field, City’s owners have completely transformed the local area. As a person who actually grew up and went to a school close to where the Etihad now stands, I know exactly what that area used to be like; a desolate, run down forgotten part of Manchester that was crying out for some form of regeneration, even after the stadium had been built for the Commonwealth Games. ADUG’s involvement has completely transformed the area, and other investors have also moved in to improve that area of East Manchester.

It’s a pity UEFA cannot see that, but it’s probably very difficult when all you can see is profit and loss.