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Man City Faces UEFA Champions League Ban Over FFP



Manchester City could be banned from the Champions League, with reports saying a ban could happen next season, after UEFA reached an initial conclusion that they had misled them over their finances, Associated Press has reported.

European football’s governing body discovered from reading internal City emails, published by Der Spiegel last month, the extent of schemes to allegedly cover up the true source of income in a bid to comply with financial fair play (FFP) regulations, a person with direct knowledge of the situation told AP.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the situation while UEFA conducts a review.

City have already been punished for violating FFP, striking an agreement in 2014 that saw them fined rather than banned from the Champions League for inflated sponsorship deals with companies linked to the club or their ownership.

UEFA said last month that evidence from “Football Leaks” could lead to past cases being re-opened.

The person with knowledge of the situation said it was more feasible to use the leaks to reassess the candour of club executives and as a basis to judge City’s compliance with FFP in the current three-year assessment period.

That covers 2015, when Der Spiegel said emails were being sent internally at City showing the manipulation of sponsorship revenue from Etihad Airways, the Abu Dhabi state-owned airline which is the naming rights sponsor of City’s stadium and training campus as well as having its name on City’s shirts.

The sponsorship was said to generate £67.5 million annually for City. But City’s holding company, the state-backed Abu Dhabi United Group, channelled £59.9m back to Etihad, according to Jorge Chumillas, the club’s chief financial officer, in an internal email to director Simon Pearce.




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