Banned from Europe, City may still have to pay huge European bonuses: report
London: Manchester City could still face huge player bonus bills if they lose an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) against a two-year European ban by UEFA, according to revelations in the British media Tuesday. Many of City players have bonuses written in their contracts for Champions League qualification and performance. In some cases, those run into millions, the Daily Mail reported. UEFA’s financial fair play compliance body, the CFCB, banned City from the Champions League for two seasons on Friday and fined the club 30 million euros ($32.5 million). It had concluded the club was not being truthful in its submissions from 2012-16 that Etihad Airlines wholly funded its annual £67.5 million ($88 million) sponsorship. Should the appeal — which the club’s CEO Ferran Soriano says in an email will be lodged soon — fail it would see City lose out on a minimum of £150 million a season for qualifying. The Daily Telegraph reported that the club promised to sue UEFA “for the next 10 years.” The Guardian meanwhile said it had unearthed more evidence that the club had fudged figures on the sponsorship. Club executives have been meeting with the players and their representatives and discussing how they would make up any losses in earnings. The club have told the players not to panic. City fear rivals could try to lure players with low bids and the promise Champions League football. Soriano remains bullish the club will win their appeal in an email sent to staff that was seen by the Daily Mail. “It is important to recognise that this is not the end,” wrote Soriano. “There is more to come. We are confident that with a fair and independent hearing we will prevail,” added the 52-year-old Spaniard. – AFP