The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) have confirmed that nine Premier League clubs wrote to them back in March asking them not to lift Manchester City’s European ban.
The Citizens were found guilty of breaching Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations back in February, after the Adjudicatory Chamber of UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) stated that the club had broken the rules by ‘overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016’.
Subsequently, the club were handed a two-year ban from Europe and a €30m fine. The former of which has, of course, since been overturned while City will instead have to pay a €10m fine for failing to co-operate with UEFA throughout the process.
Sky Sports’ Kaveh Solhekol, meanwhile, reports that CAS have confirmed that while City appealed their punishment, nine Premier League clubs wrote to them after the initial ruling pleading for them not to overturn the two-year ban.
Those clubs were: Arsenal, Burnley, Chelsea, Leicester, Liverpool, Man Utd, Newcastle, Spurs and Wolves.
While it makes sense for the European contenders to be keen on another spot opening up in both the Champions and Europa League, it’s interesting to see Burnley and Newcastle among those opposed City’s reinstatement.
Nevertheless, while the likes of Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho lamented the lifting of City’s European ban – with the latter labelling the decision as “disgraceful” – City boss Pep Guardiola handed out some particularly harsh words for Arsenal following his side’s exit in the FA Cup semi-finals at the hands of the Gunners and former assistant Mikel Arteta.
“And Arsenal, I have all the respect for what they are on the pitch, not much off the pitch,” he said, due to the Gunners’ then suspected – now confirmed – role in the letter handed to CAS by the group of clubs.
Nevertheless, it looks like a few City encounters could get a wee bit tasty next season, eh?