Manchester City has been banned from participating in the UEFA Champions League for two seasons for violating UEFA financial regulations.
UEFA announced the decision Friday in a statement, delivering a harsh punishment for City’s Financial Fair Play breaches.
“Manchester City Football Club committed serious breaches of the UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations by overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016.
“[The Adjudicatory Chamber [of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body] has also found that in breach of the regulations the Club failed to cooperate in the investigation of this case by the CFCB.”
The decision comes after a hearing was held by the CFCB on Jan. 22. The Adjudicatory Chamber also found that City failed to cooperate in the CFCB’s investigation.
Man City cannot participate in UEFA club competitions in the next two seasons (the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons) and must also pay a fine of €30 million ($32.5 million).
Following UEFA’s announcement, City released a statement, saying it would appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport as soon as possible.
“Manchester City is disappointed but not surprised by today’s announcement by the UEFA Adjudicatory Chamber. 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.”
City said the UEFA Chief Investigator conducted a “flawed” investigation and they were expecting this outcome. The club has formally complained to the UEFA Disciplinary body, and hopes to commence proceedings with the Court of Arbitration for Sport at the earliest opportunity.