In a move which shocked the footballing world, the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) decided to ban Premier League side Manchester City from European club competitions for two years for breaching financial fair play regulations. The English Premier League champions have also been fined 30 million euros (USD 33 million) by UEFA.
But the club's CEO, Ferran Soriano, has come out saying that all the allegations levelled against the club are false. In a video shared on Manchester City's website, Soriano is seen speaking on City's UEFA ban.
He said, "Well the most important thing I have to say today is that the allegations are not true. They are simply not true. The fans can be sure of two things. The first one is that the allegations are false. And the second is that we will do everything that can be done to prove so."
He added, "We know the fans are supporting us. We can feel it. MCFC fans have gone through challenges over the decades. This is just another challenge. We will stick together, we will go through it and we will not let the fans down."
Speaking about the owner's involvement, he said, "The owner has not put money in this club that has not been properly declared. We are a sustainable football club, we are profitable, we don't have debt, our accounts have been scrutinised many times, by auditors, by regulators, by investors and this is perfectly clear."
"We are looking for an early resolution obviously through a thorough process and a fair process so my best hope is that this will be finished before the beginning of the summer and until then for us, it is business as usual," he concluded.
UEFA's independent Adjudicatory Chamber of the Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) conducted the probe in the case and found Manchester City guilty of serious breaches by "overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016".
"Following a hearing held on 22 January 2020, the Adjudicatory Chamber of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body (CFCB), chaired by Jose 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," UEFA said in a statement.
"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," it added.