The bombshell claims from the New York Times reveals that City – who are set to win the Premier League for the third time in four seasons in the coming weeks – could even face a points deduction if they are found to have broken the rules.
The Premier League have not spoken out about their investigation into City’s finances since confirming in 2019 that they were looking into it, after Der Spiegel said City had disguised direct investment from owner Sheikh Mansour as sponsorship income.
Manchester City are still being investigated by the Premier League over Financial Fair Play
It has been reported that City are currently in a secret legal battle with the Premier League
The story hit headlines around the world, and City were banned from the Champions League for two years as a result of a UEFA investigation, which was later overturned by the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Their €30m fine was also reduced to €10m (£9m).
One huge talking point at the time centred around many of City’s alleged breaches being time-barred due to the five-year time period outlined in the UEFA regulations.
The New York Times, however, have revealed that the Premier League are not constrained by the same limits and therefore could punish City for FFP rule breaks going back further.
City have always insisted they have not broken any regulations and strongly hit out at Der Spiegel for ‘out-of-context materials’ published in an ‘organised and clear attempt to damage the club’s reputation’.
Last year the Court of Arbitration for Sport quashed City’s Champions League ban by UEFA
The news comes with Man City on the brink of wrapping up the Premier League title
The NY Times have revealed that City are now spending millions more in Britain’s civil courts, challenging the Premier League behind closed doors.
It has been reported that publication of materials related to the case have been kept confidential despite huge public interest in City’s off-field financial dealings.
Currently, it is not clear what sanctions could be placed upon City if they are found to have broken FFP rules, but points deductions and fines are included in the Premier League’s rulebook.
City have already won 12 major trophies in the past 10 years (four league titles, two FA Cups and six League Cups), following Sheik Mansour’s 2008 takeover, since when he has spent more than £1.5bn on the club.
Man City have won 12 major trophies since Sheik Mansour’s takeover back in 2008
City could face a points deduction if they are found to have broken FFP rules by the league
The journey has not been wholly smooth, with City falling foul of UEFA’s FFP regulations twice. Different governing bodies operate different FFP models but they both limit spending over and above what clubs can prove to be non-benefactor income.
In 2014, City were fined €60m, later reduced to €20m, by UEFA and had some minor squad and transfer restrictions placed on them after being found guilty of FFP breaches. They accepted their guilt without appeal.
Then in February last year came the two-year Champions League ban for ‘serious breaches’ of FFP, overturned on appeal last summer.