Manchester City could face UEFA sanctions over alleged financial doping

It will be interesting to see how Manchester City respond to the said email leaks

City were punished for breaking UEFA's Financial Fair Play regulations in 2014, but German magazine Der Spiegel has published a series of new claims about the club's accounts in that period in recent days.

La Liga president Javier Tebas made a similar claim previous year, with European football's governing body Uefa responding by saying it was not investigating City, who have won the Premier League three times since Sheikh Mansour took over in 2008.

Documents suggest a company called Fordham Sports Management - allegedly steered by Conservative Party donor David Rowland and his son Jonathan - paid City players for their image rights.

His response comes after both Federation Internationale de Football Association and Manchester City issued statements in response to the allegations, denying any wrongdoing.

City say they will not be commenting on the claims and that the attempt to damage their reputation is "organised and clear".

Der Spiegel claims one of City's solutions to circumvent the rules was to launch Project Longbow.

La Liga, the Spanish top flight, has said that, if UEFA does not act, it will "launch a complaint with European Union competition authorities".

He said: "My view is that it has to be done by external independent bodies and preferably with the assistance of state authorities and law enforcement agencies".

The new documents reveal City chief executive Ferran Soriano said, in reference to FFP, the club "need to fight this and do it in a way that is not visible, or we will be pointed out as the global enemies of football". "Of course I trust the club, what they have done".

"Uefa should do its job in terms of enforcing FFP because, as we have said before, both Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain are not complying with FFP rules".

"I am a manager".

"I'm a manager. I'm completely out of how we handle this situation".

He added: "I'm part of the club, I support the club. But internal emails tell a different story, providing evidence of backdated contracts, illusory sponsoring payments and cavalier, "We can do what we want", business practices".

The three letters, FFP, have always hung over Manchester City ever since Sheikh Mansour took over the club in 2008, with the rich Arab pumping billions into the Premier League side to transform them into the all-dominating side we see today.

Asked whether the allegations undermined City's achievements, Guardiola said people had been saying for a decade that the club "just win because we have money" but there was also a lot of hard work involved.

Guardiola's prime focus was on matters on the pitch and a game against Shakhtar he feels is more important than Sunday's derby against Manchester United.



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