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Manchester City's Champions League ban QandA: Where do the club go from here?

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Manchester City's Champions League ban Q&A: Where do the club go from here, what does this mean for Pep Guardiola's future and what is the punishment?The reigning Premier League champions overstated sponsorship revenueSportsmail looks at the key questions facing Pep Guardiola's Man City side European football's governing body say City have made 'serious breaches'UEFA also said City failed to co-operate with an investigation into the matter

Manchester City have been banned from UEFA club competitions for the next two seasons and fined 30million euros (£24.9million) after being found to have committed 'serious breaches' of financial regulations.

The reigning Premier League champions overstated sponsorship revenue in accounts submitted between 2012 and 2016, according to European football's governing body.

Sportsmail looks at the key questions facing Pep Guardiola's side and the rest of the Premier League. 

Manchester City have been banned from UEFA club competitions for the next two seasons

European football's governing body say City have made 'serious breaches' of their club licensing and Financial Fair Play regulations which they committed by 'overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016'.

UEFA also said City failed to co-operate with an investigation into the matter launched by its Club Financial Control Body. 

Uefa launched a probe after documents obtained by a hacker and published in German media suggested the club had falsely inflated sponsorship deals with firms with firms linked to their Abu Dhabi ownership in an alleged attempt to circumvent Uefa's FFP rules. 

City have reacted furiously to the development and say they will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

A searing statement released by the club said: 'Manchester City is disappointed but not surprised by today's announcement by the UEFA Adjudicatory Chamber. 

'The club has always anticipated the ultimate need to seek out an independent body and process to impartially consider the comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence in support of its position.'

UEFA STATEMENT 

UEFA takes note of the decision of the independent Adjudicatory Chamber of the Club Financial Control Body (CFCB), issued today, which included the following summary of its content and effect to be announced as required by the Procedural Rules governing the CFCB:  

Following a hearing held on 22 January 2020 the Adjudicatory Chamber of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body (CFCB), chaired by José da Cunha Rodrigues, has today notified Manchester City Football Club of the final decision on the case which was referred by the CFCB Chief Investigator.

The Adjudicatory Chamber, having considered all the evidence, has found that Manchester City Football Club committed serious breaches of the UEFA Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations by overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016.

The Adjudicatory Chamber has also found that in breach of the regulations the Club failed to cooperate in the investigation of this case by the CFCB.

The Adjudicatory Chamber has imposed disciplinary measures on Manchester City Football Club directing that it shall be excluded from participation in UEFA club competitions in the next two seasons (ie. the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons) and pay a fine of € 30 million.

The decision of the Adjudicatory Chamber is subject to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). If Manchester City Football Club exercises that right the full reasoned decision of the Adjudicatory Chamber will not be published prior to publication of the final award by the CAS.'

As noted by the Adjudicatory Chamber, the club has the right to appeal this decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Therefore, UEFA will not be commenting further on this decision at this stage.

Kevin De Bruyne is facing playing two seasons without Champions League football

Guardiola's side will continue their Champions League campaign this season as normal. 

The ban, which is being appealed, excludes City from Europe's elite competition for the next two seasons (ie. the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons).

City face Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu in the first leg of their Champions last-16 tie on February 26.  

AC Milan were banned from European competitions for breaching FFP rules by UEFA in 2018 for two years just like City have been now.

The Serie A club took appealed to CAS and it was appealed which allowed Milan to enter the Europa League in the 2018-19 season.

But last summer Milan were referred to UEFA's financial watchdog again and served a one-year ban from European football during the current campaign.

It will not be a surprise if something similar happens with City. 

Sergio Aguero might not play in the Champions League again for Manchester City

MANCHESTER CITY STATEMENT 

Manchester City is disappointed but not surprised by today's announcement by the UEFA Adjudicatory Chamber. The Club has always anticipated the ultimate need to seek out an independent body and process to impartially consider the comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence in support of its position.

In December 2018, the UEFA Chief Investigator publicly previewed the outcome and sanction he intended to be delivered to Manchester City, before any investigation had even begun. The subsequent flawed and consistently leaked UEFA process he oversaw has meant that there was little doubt in the result that he would deliver. The Club has formally complained to the UEFA Disciplinary body, a complaint which was validated by a CAS ruling. 

'Simply put, this is a case initiated by UEFA, prosecuted by UEFA and judged by UEFA. With this prejudicial process now over, the Club will pursue an impartial judgment as quickly as possible and will therefore, in the first instance, commence proceedings with the Court of Arbitration for Sport at the earliest opportunity.' 

One major question on the lips of many Premier League clubs is who will take City's Champions League spot if the Citizens finish in the top-four. 

While UEFA and the Premier League have not confirmed what will happen regarding England's qualification spots, UEFA rule 4.08 says:

'A club which is not admitted to the competition is replaced by the next best-placed club in the top domestic championship of the same association, provided the new club fulfils the admission criteria.one potential solution is that fifth place qualifying for European's biggest club competition.' 

This would mean Chris Wilder's Sheffield United - who currently occupy that fifth position in the Premier League - are in pole position to qualify for the Champions League with just over a dozen matches remaining.  

It means Sheffield United could qualify for the Champions League by finishing in fifth place

CITY'S CHAMPIONS LEAGUE RECORD 

2011-12 - 3rd in group, Europa League round of 16 

2012-13 - Group stage 2013-14 - Last 16

2014-15 - Last 16 2015-16 - Semi-finals 

2016-17 - Last 16 

2017-18 - Quarter-finals 

2018-19 - Quarter-finals 

2019-20 - Last 16 (v Real Madrid) 

Guardiola has a break clause in his contract which could see him leave City at the end of this season.

Sportsmail can reveal that the deal the Spaniard signed last year — which saw him extend his original contract until 2021 — included an agreement that he could depart at the conclusion of this campaign should certain stipulations that satisfy the club be met.

City officials are confident that, despite an underwhelming season to date which has seen City fall a hefty 22 points behind runaway leaders Liverpool, Guardiola will honour his deal. 

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