Fears are growing within the Manchester City organization that Pep Guardiola could leave the club if the Premier League is able to substantiate the charges against the club. In a statement published on Monday, the Premier League brought close to a hundred charges against Manchester City regarding a breach of rules regarding financial dealings. The breaches go as far back as the 2009/10 season and cover extensive aspects of financial dealings.
🛑 Premier League statement confirms “Manchester City have been charged with numerous breaches of financial rules ”.@martynziegler now reports that “Man City will not be able to appeal any sanction to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the one which overturned the UEFA ban. pic.twitter.com/fsRtpQKSI8
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) February 6, 2023
Since the statement was put out, many pundits and experts have said the consequences could be dire if even half of the claims against the club are proven. Some of these sanctions include point deductions, expulsion from the league and/or paying huge fines. This wouldn’t be the first time Man City have had charges brought against them, with UEFA charging the club in 2020 for breaches of Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules. The charges we however dismissed after Man City appealed a 2-year UCL ban at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) five months later.
Pep Guardiola famously defended the club throughout the period and asked critics to apologize after charges we dismissed. He however said he has warned that he would walk if the club ever lied to him about its financial dealings. These new charges could bring a wedge between the former Bayern coach and the City hierarchy considering how damning the charges are and how far back they go even preceding his time at the club.
He revealed last year: ‘If I defend the people and the club it’s because I work with them. When I asked about suspicions or if our people have done something, then I say to them, “tell me”.
‘I said to them “if you lie to me, the day after I’m not here, I will be out and you will not be my friend any more.” But I look at them and believe them 100 per cent from day one. So I defend the club because of that.’
It is thus expected that should these charges be proven, Guardiola will walk away from City even though he only recently signed a contract extension with the club.
The club in this case will have no way to appeal to CAS since it falls outside their jurisdiction, with an independent panel set to decide their fate if they are found guilty. It could take quite a while for the final verdict to be reached by the independent panel but the City’s reported lack of cooperation with the investigation, which started in 2018 is very concerning.
The legal tussle will be very interesting to watch and it remains to be seen whether the club will be found guilty or not in the near future.