UEFA Ban: Winning Champions League this season would be best response from Manchester City

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Stand by. Some extremely rich lawyers are about to get an awful lot richer.

UEFA, with its vast wealth, can afford the best legal advice, ditto Manchester City.

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On Friday night, the champagne corks would have been popping in the offices of law firms favoured by the fat cats of European football’s governing body and by those looking after the Abu Dhabi-funded super club that is City.

They will be the only winners in this Financial Fair Play farce.

If City have deliberately contravened FFP rules, they have to be punished. Whether it should be with a two-year ban from UEFA’s flagship competition and a €30million fine – when national associations and clubs get pocket-money penalties for having racist fans horribly abuse black players – is another matter.

“A case initiated by UEFA, prosecuted by UEFA and judged by UEFA,” said City’s statement.

There is no denying that.

Now, over to the Court of Arbitration for Sport and a tortuous appeal process.

Some way down the line, it could even reach higher courts, who would be asked to rule on the very essence of Financial Fair Play and whether it is a system designed to maintain the dominance of the commercial giants and keep City and the like in their subservient place.

After all, the UEFA VVIPs much prefer a night in Madrid, Barcelona, Milan or Munich to a chilly one in the outpost of Eastlands.

My guess is that that the fallout from this will bring the entire system of FFP crashing down.

At the very least, City should be demanding a forensic analysis of the accounts of every elite club out there and the publication of those investigations.

Demanding to know how the Qatar-backed Paris St Germain stay within FFP rules, for example.

In the meantime, what will it mean for Pep Guardiola? He might leave a year before he had intended to but that is about it.

He won’t have had a sleepless night after the news, let’s put it that way.

And considering their disdain for UEFA, City fans will probably not be that bothered either.

So maybe the club should not go down the route of making lawyers lavishly richer.

Maybe they should just take the punishment, win this season’s Champions League, refuse to pick up the trophy or go near the hand of UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin and leave the competition devalued for a couple of years because it does not include one of Europe’s most beautiful teams.

At least that way, fat cat lawyers will not get fatter.

 

 

 

Mirror UK

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