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'All the clubs spend a lot of money' - Man City deserve Champions League after decade of growth, insists Guardiola

23:17 BST 14/07/2020
Pep Guardiola Manchester City 2019-20
The Spaniard believes his club have earned the right to regarded among Europe's best sides despite the vast amount of finances used

Pep Guardiola has defended Manchester City's huge spending in the transfer market and says the club has earned the right to be regarded among Europe's elite.

City's finances have been under the microscope of late, with the club winning a Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) appeal on Monday to overturn a two-year ban from UEFA competition for allegedly breaching Financial Fair Play rules.

Despite the club spending nearly £2 billion ($2.5bn) on transfers in the past 20 years, Guardiola feels City's rise to success mirrors that of Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea.

The Spaniard continued to deny his club had ever breached FFP rules, insisting that the right decision had been made during the legal process.

"I'm incredibly happy for the decision which shows what all the people said about the club was not true, and to defend on the pitch what we won on the pitch," Guardiola said.

"We have made a step forward in 10 years. We invested a lot of money, like a lot of clubs. We did it the right way. We have not been banned because we followed the FFP rules. If we hadn’t we would have been banned.

"A lot of clubs invest. Manchester United and Arsenal in periods before when they won the leagues, they invested more than the others. Chelsea too when they won the league, they invested more money than the other ones.

"We have built a club in terms of the past decade to compete with the elite in Premier League and Champions League. For that I need the club to be financially strong - like a lot of clubs - to do it. Of course, we make mistakes. But we can spend as much money as our chairman or owners want but always, always in the FFP rules."

Manchester City host relegation-threatened Bournemouth on Wednesday night with their second-place league position locked in with three matches to play.

They will resume their Champions League campaign as one of the favourites next month, with a 2-1 lead going into the home leg of their round-of-16 match against Real Madrid.