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Sky Blue News: EPL Charges, City Pannick, Lionesses, and More...

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Manchester City Training Session Photo by Tom Flathers/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

Manchester City Women are sending seven players to represent England in the Arnold Clark Cup. The Men are getting ready to face off against Aston Villa... and the Premier League. Sky Blue News has all the latest to get you caught up.

Man City fight with Premier League will cause ‘untenable’ result amid FFP debate - Simon Bajkowski - Manchester Evening News

After appealing the UEFA decision in 2019, the Blues felt vindicated when the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) sided with their case and completely overturned a two-year ban from the Champions League. The club have welcomed an independent commission to look into the Premier League charges, hoping for a similar outcome.

But the Blues were fined by CAS for not co-operating fully with the original investigation, and have been similarly accused by the Premier League. From the little that has been made publicly available of the investigation, it is clearly possible to see that those charges at the very least could stick.

Would that be enough, though, for the Premier League to claim a victory in bringing such major accusations against the reigning champions. Not according to football finance expert Kieran Maguire, who believes that the allegations are so powerful that there will need to be serious repercussions at the top of at least one of the organisations at the end of it.

“If you look at the charges as an overall body of work the Premier League have effectively said that Manchester City have systematically misrepresented their finances for a period of at least nine years in order to gain an advantage,” he said. “Trying to break it down into individual accusations, you’re looking at a million here, half a million there. It isn’t actually that significant but as a whole body of work, as a culture of financial misrepresentation, it is a huge allegation and it goes to the very top of the club.

City Accused: What the Premier League Allegations Mean for MCFC - CITYZENDuck - Bitter and Blue

The charges against Manchester City vary from underreporting the compensation paid to former manager Roberto Mancini, to not adhering to rules regarding profitability and sustainability, to not fully cooperating with the investigation. City used the latter tactic in its fight against UEFA. In fact, had CAS not found that City obstructed UEFA’s investigation, they might well have gotten the entire fine wiped out. So what penalties do the club face this time?

Under rule, W.51 of the Premier League Handbook 2022/23, the commission has a good amount of discretion at its disposal in terms of punishment. If City are found guilty they could be expelled from the competition. Obviously, this would be devastating for the club. It would likely lead to a mass exodus of the top players and could even cause the manager to seek new surroundings. However unlikely, should this be City’s punishment, it would see the club playing in the Championship. Who’s ready for away days at QPR?

The commission could decide to deduct points from Man City. Juventus recently suffered a 15-point reduction for its financial issues with Serie A. The reduction has Juve now sitting 13th in the league. One would expect City to suffer a similar fate should they receive the same treatment as the Italian giants. For context, City would sit 8th in the Premier League if you took 15 points from their total right now. They would still be in contention for European football, and they would still be above Chelsea FC and Liverpool.

Manchester City transfer plans ‘unaffected by Premier League charges’ - Ben Knapton - Sports Mole

While the matter could take a number of years to wrap up, City could face unprecedented sanctions if found guilty, namely transfer bans, points deductions or relegation from the top flight.

The Citizens have denied any wrongdoing, though, and The Athletic claims that the Premier League champions will carry on their transfer and contract activity as normal for the time being.

The report adds that club chiefs continued to discuss plans for the summer window even after learning of the charges, and they adopted a similar stance in 2020 after being found guilty of breaching UEFA FFP rules.

Man City were banned from the Champions League for two seasons and fined £25m that year, but that continental suspension was overturned following an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

However, City cannot appeal their case to CAS this time, and they will find it difficult to convince players to move to the Etihad while the recent allegations are hanging over their heads.

Manchester City REHIRE prestigious £80,000 per day lawyer in wake of Premier League charges - Harry Winters - City Xtra

In wake of the barrage of charges against the reigning Premier League champions, Manchester City have rehired Lord Pannick KC, according to The Lawyer.

Lord Pannick KC of Blackstone Chambers is set to defend Manchester City alongside Paul Harris KC of Monckton Chambers, with the pair having been previously employed by the club.

The two men were heavily involved in Manchester City’s successful appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in 2020 to overturn a two-year ban imposed by UEFA for alleged breaches of Financial Fair Play.

Lord Pannick KC, who has recently advised former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson in relation to the Partygate inquiry, acted successfully against the Government in the Supreme Court case over the prorogation of Parliament.

Man City to pay barrister as much as Kevin De Bruyne with £10,000-per-hour wages necessary amid Premier League charges - Dan Bernstein - Goal

WHAT HAPPENED? Pannick could cost City as much as £10,000 an hour to defend the organisation as an independent commission determines whether to punish them over the findings of a four-year Premier League investigation, according to The Lawyer. Disciplinary measures for violations of financial rules could be as harsh as a points deduction or relegation, so the club are willing to pay any amount to fund a strong defence.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: If paid at his highest requested fee, Pannick would make as much as star midfielder Kevin De Bruyne.

AND WHAT’S MORE: There is no set timetable for when the independent commission, appointed by the Premier League’s judiciary panel, must finalise its ruling on Manchester City. The proceedings will happen in private.


Seven City players have been selected for Sarina Wiegman’s latest England squad, while Laura Coombs has also received her first call-up since November 2020.

Ellie Roebuck, Sandy MacIver, Alex Greenwood, Chloe Kelly, Lauren Hemp, Jess Park (on loan at Everton) make up the entirety of those from the Club called upon to represent the Lionesses.

Coombs’ inclusion marks her first under the Dutch coach and her first since November 2020 when she was picked by Phil Neville - and adds to what’s been a wonderful few days for the 32-year-old.

On Monday, she penned a new deal at the Academy Stadium – keeping her in sky blue until 2025 – before receiving the news she’ll link-up with the Lionesses for their upcoming games against South Korea, Italy and Belgium in the Arnold Clark Cup.

And finally... Pete has a collection of tweets that remind us that our best trait as City fans is our sense of humour.

Manchester City Charges - The Fan’s Reactions - Manc Pete - Bitter and Blue

However, the decision by the Premier League to drop these charges on the blues, after over four years of investigation, should really have been met with anger and derision by the club’s supporters. Had this happened to any other team, that would almost certainly have been the reaction. Can you imagine Stretford End Steve crying into his morning Mocha on the banks of the River Thames? Or LFC Joe wondering if he should find a new club to follow and spending his morning pricing up the cost of flights from Dublin to London?

But Manchester City supporters are a different breed. We’ve seen things they’ll never see, and that is such a poignant phrase to use as we look at the reaction of the fans.

While some have been defending the club and stating that the hierarchy will bring the Premier League down (they will and it will be so much fun to watch), a large number of Twitter users have taken to the social media platform to react in true Manchester City supporter style. Here are some of the best ones we’ve seen so far (apologies for Rachel, there’s no helping her):

There you have it you Mancs. Stay with Bitter and Blue for all the latest about MCFC. Come back tomorrow for more from Sky Blue News.