Manchester City may face a deduction of points or even expulsion from the Premier League due to allegations of violations of Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules.
The Premier League accused the current champions of violating the competition’s rules on Monday, after a prolonged investigation into the matter. The allegations cover the period from 2009 to 2018, with the Premier League accusing City of providing false financial information.
If the charges are proven to be true, several punishments could be imposed, including some extreme options.
According to rule W51 in the Premier League’s regulations, Manchester City could potentially be banned from playing matches, although the specifics of such a scenario are not clear.
The subsection reads: “Having heard and considered such mitigating factors, the Commission may suspend it [a club] from playing in League Matches or any matches in competitions which form part of the Games Programme or Professional Development Leagues for such period as it thinks fit.”
A more probable punishment for Manchester City could be a deduction of points from their current total. Juventus was previously deducted 15 points after an investigation into the club’s transfer activities, which is different from City’s alleged breach.
The exact number of points that could be taken away is uncertain, but any reduction would likely have a significant impact on their standing in the Premier League.
Currently, Manchester City is second in the league, close behind leaders Arsenal. A 15-point deduction would result in a drop to ninth place, while a larger deduction could place them in danger of relegation.
The points deduction could also extend to subsequent seasons and City is expected to contest the findings through legal means.
The Premier League has the authority to exclude a team from the league, which could be the harshest penalty for the team in question.
If a team were to be expelled from the Premier League, it is uncertain where they would go next. They could try to become part of the Football League, but this may prove challenging due to the limited number of teams already in the league.
An alternative option for the expelled team could be to apply to join the National League, as was the case with QPR in 2014 when they faced the possibility of a fine for violating spending rules in the Championship.
The Premier League’s rulebook (W51) does not explicitly state that stripping titles is a possible penalty, but it does allow for various consequences for rule violations.
According to W.51.10, the Commission has the discretion to “make such other order as it sees fit,” potentially including the removal of titles won by a club.
Manchester City has been successful in winning multiple titles over the past decade, including three titles during the time frame of their supposed rule breaches from 2009 to 2018. They may now be facing potential consequences.
According to W.51.9, the Commission has the authority to impose a fine on Manchester City, which may include the costs and expenses of the Committee, if they are found guilty of any misconduct.
In simpler terms, Manchester City may be required to pay a fine if their alleged violations are confirmed.