BrandArena: Man City, PSG facing squad caps, fines over FFP

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Man City, PSG facing squad caps, fines over FFP

Manchester City Owners (Getty images)
French Ligue 1 champion Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and English Premier League club Manchester City are facing fines of €60m ($83.4m) and restrictions on their Champions League squads for next season for breaking Uefa’s Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations, according to multiple reports.

French newspaper L’Equipe said PSG would be fined and have its Champions League squad capped at 21 players instead of 25 next season under a proposed settlement agreement with Uefa, European football’s governing body. The club's wage bill would also be capped and the fine spread over three years.

UK news agency Press Association Sport also reported that Manchester City is facing similar sanctions, including the €60m fine, squad size restrictions and a cap imposed for next season to ensure there is no rise on this season’s ‘Champions League A squad’ wage bill.

The two clubs are among nine European sides being looked at by Uefa’s club financial control board (CFCB) for FFP breaches. However, while PSG is understood to be close to reaching an agreement with Uefa, City is believed to have made little headway in its argument for a significant reduction in its sanctions.

Uefa president Michel Platini said last month that the ultimate sanction of exclusion from the Champions League would not be imposed, but City faces the prospect of even stiffer punishment than that already detailed from the CFCB’s adjudicatory panel if it fails to come to an agreement with Uefa.

Both City and PSG have come under Uefa’s microscope due to significant sponsorship deals with Middle Eastern entities. Abu Dhabi-owned City has a £40m (€48.6m/$67.5m) a year shirt and stadium deal with Etihad Airways.

Uefa’s FFP rules dictate that clubs must have limited losses to €45m over the past two years, but exemptions are in place for spending on youth development, stadium infrastructure and older contracts.

Also, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger last week called on UEFA to ensure that clubs were given appropriate sanctions. "There are rules to apply for the financial fair play. If you don't respect them, you have to apply the rules," the Frenchman said.

Having spent heavily to compete with the best teams in Europe in recent seasons, Manchester City and PSG appear most at risk of falling foul of the process.

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