NYON: Manchester City have said the club are “disappointed, but regrettably not surprised” after being referred to UEFA’s financial control body adjudicatory chamber.
City, who deny all accounting wrongdoing, risk a ban from European competition if found guilty of breaking financial fair play rules.
Allegations from the Football Leaks revelations last autumn suggested that the newly recrowned English champions broke FFP regulations by inflating the value of a multimillion-pound sponsorship deal. City had already been fined £49m in 2014 for a previous breach of regulations.
A statement from the European federation said the investigation, led by former Belgian Prime Minister Yves Leterme, had decided “to refer Manchester City FC to the CFCB adjudicatory chamber following the conclusion of his investigation.”
A City statement responded: “Leaks to media over the last week are indicative of the process that has been overseen by Mr Leterme. Manchester City is entirely confident of a positive outcome when the matter is considered by an independent judicial body.
“The CFCB IC referral ignores a comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence provided by Manchester City FC to the chamber.
“The decision contains mistakes, misinterpretations and confusions fundamentally borne out of a basic lack of due process and there remain significant unresolved matters raised by Manchester City FC as part of what the club has found to be a wholly unsatisfactory, curtailed, and hostile process.”
It is unlikely any punishment for City will apply to next season’s Champions League because they could appeal, and even take their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
City also risk a transfer ban over separate inquiries concerning the signing of youth players and being run by the Football Association, Premier League and world federation FIFA.