UEFA’s role as a football regulatory body should not be telling Manchester City how to spend money. However, they should punish them for committing fraud.
The day will go down in the halls of Manchester City Football Club’s history as the Valentine’s Day Massacre. On February 14th, Europe’s football governing body, UEFA, laid down both a verdict and a sentence to the club that few were expecting.
UEFA banned the Cityzens from Champions and Europa League football competition for the next two years starting in 2020-21. They also fined the club 30 million euros for their trouble. This was a rather stiff punishment under the Financial Fair Play (FFP) guidelines, which were enacted in 2011. UEFA issued the following statement:
“The Adjudicatory Chamber, having considered all the evidence, has found that Manchester City Football Club committed serious breaches of the UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations by overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016.
The Adjudicatory Chamber has also found that in breach of the regulations the Club failed to cooperate in the investigation of this case by the CFCB.
The Adjudicatory Chamber has imposed disciplinary measures on Manchester City Football Club directing that it shall be excluded from participation in UEFA club competitions in the next two seasons (ie. the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons) and pay a fine of € 30 million.
The decision of the Adjudicatory Chamber is subject to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). If Manchester City Football Club exercises that right the full reasoned decision of the Adjudicatory Chamber will not be published prior to publication of the final award by the CAS.”
Financial Fair Play (FFP) was created in order to place limitations on football clubs and their owners on how they spend money on building and maintaining their clubs. Its inherent design was to keep rich owners from spending their clubs into possible financial Armageddon through overspending beyond their means. The other purpose of FFP was to keep teams from doing what Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City have been allegedly attempting to do: buying trophies.