Manchester City are celebrating their fifth Premier League crown in six years, but a cloud is hanging over their recent domestic success due to the club being charged multiple times by the Premier League for breaking its financial rules. The charges allege that City failed to give ‘a true and fair view of the club’s financial position’ by misleading regulators over its sponsorship income and operating costs, not providing full details over player and manager salaries, breaking various profit and sustainability rules, and failing to comply with the Premier League’s investigation. The club has said they look forward to the matter being put to rest once and for all.
In theory, Manchester City could be stripped of the three Premier League titles they won during the timeframe (2011/12, 2013/14 and 2017/18). If this does happen, it would mark the first time in English football history that a club has been stripped of a league title in retrospect. The Premier League has referred the club to an independent commission, who has the ability to recommend a whole host of punishments including suspending a club from playing league matches, points deductions, recommending to the board that league matches be replayed, recommending to the board that the league expels the respondent club, ordering compensation, cancelling or refusing registration of players, conditional punishment, ordering the club to pay costs, and making such other order as it thinks fit. Fellow Premier League clubs are said to favour City being relegated instead of stripping away their previous titles. Crucially, the club will not be able to appeal against any punishments decided on by the independent commission. There has been no timeframe specified for how long the process could take, and the public will only know the outcome when the decision is published on the Premier League’s website.