REIGNING champs Man City have been charged with breaching financial regulations by the Premier League. The case has been handed over to an independent commission to be dealt with.
The news comes as a surprise to some, but it’s not the first time that Manchester City has gotten caught with their hand in the cookie jar.
In this article, we’ll take a look at how this happened and what might come of it.
Man City is facing over 100 breaches of the rules
Allegedly, Man City has broken financial fair play rules a whopping 100+ times between the years 2009 and 2018. Within that timeframe, they won three Premier League championships and were riding a high wave financially.
In fact, they were a favourite choice among people who love to gamble — especially German fans. Man City is one of the most watched teams in Germany, and a lot of German football enthusiasts follow them regularly. Throughout Man City’s reign, insiders in Germany have put together sites for tips on matches to break down matchups, expectations and odds.
Premier League’s financial rules explained
Premier League put financial regulations in place for all teams in an attempt to ensure they’re spending what they earn. However, there are loopholes to these restrictions. Teams can simply lie about how much they’re earning and how much they’re spending.
Allegedly, Man City did just that, breaching the rules throughout a nine-season period. They didn’t disclose the accurate figures of one of their managerial staff. The allegations are that he was making far more than what was reported, which is illegal in the league.
Premier League also alleges that Man City hasn’t been compliant throughout their investigation, and that they refused to comply with UEFA’s financial regulations which are intended to foster fair play.
In short, Manchester City is in deep trouble this time.
Man City’s hide saved before
In 2020, City faced a ban but had it appealed in the court of arbitration (CAS), and the accompanying fine was reduced to only 10m.
UEFA vs Premier League rules
UEFA and Premier League rules are similar, but not identical. The biggest difference is that the UEFA has a statute of limitations which makes any violations outside of the five-year mark essentially non-punishable. The Premier League doesn’t have anything of the sort.
The UEFA also has rules about where evidence can actually come from, unlike Premier League where leaks and hacked info are legitimate pieces of evidence in a case.
What will City’s punishment be?
It’s hard to say exactly what Man City’s fate will be, but it’s almost certain that the Premier League will crack down on them with one or more of the following:
- Suspension from playing in the League for one or more years
- Point deductions from the seasons where they broke the rules
- Recommendation that certain matches be replayed
- Being expelled (although this is not likely)
- Payment of compensation and fees to the League
- Rejection of certain player registrations
How soon will this happen?
It’s rare that these sorts of things play out in a timely manner. For better or for worse, Man City will not likely have to face up to their punishments this season. In all likelihood, next season or possibly even the season after is when they’ll need to pay for breaking the rules.
Will the proceedings be public?
Since they’re dealing with an independent commission, the proceedings will be in private, which Man City must be happy about considering the spectacle it would be if it were public.
Can Man City appeal?
After their judgement, Man City can appeal, but it cannot go to the CAS. This means it won’t be easy for them to get an appeal. It is expected that City will do what they can to try to get out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves.
Premier League teams often have controversy. It comes with the territory, but this time there will be repercussions that should be expensive for Man City and frustrating. Fans will also have to hear about it from their rivals, not to mention the fact that it will be all over the news.
All in all, this incident was a major blunder for Man City, and one that they will be very lucky to get out of unscathed. At the very least, they’ll have to pay a hefty fine. At the worst, they’ll be out of the league next season or the season after that.