It was an exciting moment for Manchester City FC and their fans on Monday July 13, 2020, when their appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) regarding the allegation of financial fair play violations levelled against them was successful. We will recall that Manchester City was banned from European competitions for two seasons and fined by the adjudicatory chamber of the independent CFCB (the Club Financial Control Body) over the allegation that Manchester City “overstated its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016”. CFCB equally accused Manchester City of failing to comply with the UEFA rule that was put in place specifically to reduce the net losses that clubs can incur within three – year fiscal period, while the club was said to have also refused to cooperate with the ensuing investigation.
But in its ruling on Monday July 13, 2020, Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) averred that allegations regarding shielding of sponsorship or equity funding “were clearly more significant violations than obstructing the CFCB’s investigations”, as such, it would be too punitive to mete a ban on Manchester City from taking part in UEFA’s club competitions. CAS therefore upheld the fine imposed on Manchester City but reduced the earlier fine of 30 million Euros to 10 million Euros. But despite this seemingly favourable outcome for Manchester City FC, would you suggest they appeal this ruling or they should be content with playing in the UEFA Champions League and just pay the fine and move on?