Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain have fallen fouls of UEFA’s Financial Fair Play rules. According to previous reports, they were to be banned from UEFA competitions, but now it has emerged that they will be let off with a fine, albeit a hefty one.
No fewer than nine clubs have failed to meet European football governing body’s regulations that stated that their financial losses between 2011 and 2013 could not be higher than £37 million.
UEFA has proposed a fine of £50 million on City and a reduction in the Citizens’ squad from 25 to 21 players for next season’s Champions League. Eight of those players have to be locally trained and four need to be club-trained.
However, the 2012 Premier League champions, who are already fighting their corner, will not be excluded from Europe’s premier club competition, a threat that was initially used when the rules came into place.
This apparent back-tracking has perplexed Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who says that the rules and punishments on such instances need to simple.
‘There are rules’, the Frenchman told reporters. ‘You respect them or you don’t respect them. If you don’t respect them you have to be punished. When UEFA doesn’t want to kick the clubs out of the Champions League, they have to find a more subtle punishment. To me, and from all of us on the outside, it looks a complicated punishment’.
Wenger’s opinion will be shared by many football followers all over the world. City – and eight other clubs – have broken the rules that were laid out to them; the punishments should have been laid bare beforehand and there shouldn’t be any room for leniency.