Manchester City have been accused of inflating sponsorship deals to circumvent Financial Fair Play rules, as reported by the Daily Mail.
While UEFA’s own investigation turned up with incriminating evidence, the organisation’s rules regarding time-barred offences meant that it couldn’t act on illegal behaviour if it exceeded a five-year limit.
“City have allegedly benefited from abnormally high sponsorship details from entities based in the UAE, in deals that appear to have contravened FFP rules,” Nick Harris wrote.
“If money was being funnelled into City to artificially inflate their income for years, that would be a problem.
“And various emails and documents obtained by Football Leaks and/or this newspaper suggest that happened.
“The Premier League announced an investigation more than two years ago but that has so far been delayed by City’s actions in court. City have declined to clarify multiple issues around this.”
The publication notes that the Premier League in its investigation does suspect that a breaking of rules may have occurred in this instance.
“City’s position then is that they have broken no rules. Yet now it can be revealed that, in an argument the club put before a court, they admitted the Premier League apparently suspected there was evidence of wrongdoing,” the reporter added. “‘The Premier League contends that the [media] reports contain information suggesting breaches of the rules,’ said City’s legal team.”
When it comes to the Premier League, however, reports appear to suggest that a similar restriction does not apply, which could potentially open up City to retrospective punishment regarding, for example, the 2013/14 title narrowly won over Liverpool.
READ MORE: Liverpool following Chelsea’s lead to build profitable transfer strategy, suggests finance expert
Considering that (UEFA) evidence precedes the 2015/16 season, it would seem unlikely at the moment that the 2018/19 title contested between us and our league rivals would not be made the subject of disciplinary action.
Should the Premier League’s investigation eventually conclude that City made a mockery of the rules, there’s no reason why a stripping of titles couldn’t enter the discussion if the club didn’t act on a level playing field to its competitors.
At the moment, the Manchester-based outfit remains innocent until proven guilty, though the early signs – not to mention their clear reluctance to release documentation – are hardly encouraging.
EOTK Insider Opinion: Carragher’s made an interesting point about Wijnaldum but he’s off the mark on one thing
This is what happens when Countries own teams, Intelligence Services are available to impede investigations etc, Man City should be relegated and stripped of Titles………caught red handed.
Intelligence services impede investigations?!? Did you think that over before you wrote it? It’s football – not some James Bond fantasy. What next the KGB is helping Chelsea sign Haaland? The only “spying “going on it’s Liverpool FC hacking Manchester City’s scout database – admitted and settled with a million quid. Cheap at twice the price.
Regurditated old news and evidence that didn’t stand up in CAS should concentrate on your own club.
States owning teams is totally wrong……..wait and see!.
what STATE is that then??? And why am I surprised that ONCE AGAIN you lot are talking about City. Absolutely ridiculous that nearly daily one of your idiotic papers or websites zones in on the Champions. If it wasnt so sad it would be kinda flattering but anything coming out of the red side of Merseyside is usually vile and full of lies and you have the sheer unadulterated cheek of calling us out??? Please name me the ONLY club ever to get an entire country banned from playing football??? or have you forgotten that????
Bit it was OK for Liverpool to be propped up by Littlewoods for years – are we going to strip those titles too? Bottom line is 20% equity was bought by Chinese and American investors who will have separately done due diligence. knowing about these Premier League investigations and the legal implications. It will go nowhere just as the with the UEFA witch hunt.. Dream on. The best players on the pitch won the league – no corrupt sanctions can change that.
UEFA FFP wasn’t around in 2010, it came in in 2012.
EPL FFP wasn’t around until the 2013-14 season.
City have no case to answer.