Man City slam 'prejudicial' UEFA and will appeal Champions League ban

Last Updated

Manchester City have criticised UEFA after being hit with a two-year ban from the Champions League and confirmed they will appeal the decision.

The Premier League side were hit with a suspension from Europe's premier club competition and a €30 million fine for a "serious" breach of Financial Fair Play rules and failing to cooperate in the governing body's investigation.

The Adjudicatory Chamber found City guilty of misleading UEFA by inflating their sponsorship revenues between 2012 and 2016. City can appeal the decision through the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which will either fully or partially uphold the decision or overturn it.

The investigation was prompted by German magazine Der Spiegel's publication of emails and documents obtained by Football Leaks, though City dismissed the allegations as being based on "out of context materials purportedly hacked or stolen".

And City insist they have "irrefutable evidence" that support their denial of any wrong doing and say the investigator's decision had been made before the process even began.

"Manchester City is disappointed but not surprised by today’s announcement by the UEFA Adjudicatory Chamber," a statement read. "The Club has always anticipated the ultimate need to seek out an independent body and process to impartially consider the comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence in support of its position.

"In December 2018, the UEFA Chief Investigator publicly previewed the outcome and sanction he intended to be delivered to Manchester City, before any investigation had even begun.

Article continues below

"The subsequent flawed and consistently leaked UEFA process he oversaw has meant that there was little doubt in the result that he would deliver. The Club has formally complained to the UEFA Disciplinary body, a complaint which was validated by a CAS ruling.

"Simply put, this is a case initiated by UEFA, prosecuted by UEFA and judged by UEFA. With this prejudicial process now over, the Club will pursue an impartial judgment as quickly as possible and will therefore, in the first instance, commence proceedings with the Court of Arbitration for Sport at the earliest opportunity."

City are paired with Real Madrid in the last-16 of this season's Champions League, with the first-leg to be played in the Spanish capital on February 26.