Does Man City’s Ban Highlight Problems With FFP or Show its Benefits?



Last week, the world of football was rocked when Manchester City was handed a two-year ban from the Champions League. While much of what will happen is still pending an appeal, as it stands the club will not compete in Europe’s (heck, the world’s) elite club competition. Many fans around the world are asking if this situation means Financial Fair Play (FFP) has worked or whether its failings have been exposed?

Football and especially the Premier League and Champions League continue to be the biggest driver behind sports betting. Manchester City fans are using the best live casino websites with sportsbooks to bet on their team in competitions. Following football and betting on it is now as easy as opening a laptop or smartphone and heading to an online casino.


Manchester City’s future has become uncertain. More importantly for the wider world of football, the situation has shown UEFA (European football’s governing body) is willing to get serious as it seeks to uphold FFP. Furthermore, the situation arguably puts to an end the so-called lottery clubs who grew off the riches of wealthy owners.

Paris Saint-German and Chelsea are the two other famous recipients of billionaire owners who plugged money into the clubs. Interestingly, Chelsea has recently come off its own transfer ban and PSG has been forced to cut costs to balance its books to reach compliance with FFP.

One of the big misconceptions surrounding FFP is its exact purpose. Critics of the financial regulations say FFP was constructed to protect a few elite clubs from the competition. They say FFP prevents clubs from benefiting off rich owners. Without a rich owner, a relatively small club would never have been able to compete with its neighbor Manchester United.

However, that was not the explicit concept of FFP. Instead, Financial Fair Play was set up to prevent clubs from going into debt. By only allowing clubs to spend what they earn, the trend of clubs going financially bust was arguably put to an end. Indeed, profits across clubs have increased since FFP was introduced.

The trade-off was a small club would never generate enough money to compete at the top of the football pyramid. In other words, FFP would keep the established order by default. Some would argue there is no harm with a rich owner gifting a club money to buy players and improve infrastructure.

It’s a fair argument too. What harm did Man City really do? For this reason, there is some sympathy for the club. That sympathy is certainly extended to manager Pep Guardiola and his team of players. None of them had any part in the financial side.

Despite this, Manchester City signed up to FFP and agreed to its terms. In other words, they agreed to play by the rules. UEFA later found out the club was declaring money gifted by its owner as a sponsorship deal. Worse, Man City is said to have been uncooperative during the investigation. Essentially, the club failed to play by the rules.

It is worth noting Man City denies all of the charges and will appeal the case before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). As the club now faces a two year ban from the Champions League and a possible points deduction in the Premier League, the bigger story is how the era of FFP now truly dominates the world of football.

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  1. FFP was introduced purely for the protection of certain clubs, such as United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Bayern, RM etc ie the ” elite of UeFA “. Keeping the money for their vested interests at the expense of all others.

    Chelsea managed to gatecrash the party, but along came City and PSG who were able to compete financially with the cosy cartel clubs, and that is where the elite clubs really decided that UeFA had to stop the upstarts from getting their hands on the millions which the CL afforded.

    This latest action by EuFA has no doubt been due to pressure from the elite clubs to stop City ( and any other investor ) spoiling the party.

    Specifically changed rules to ensure the debt loaded United can carry on . Nothing ethical about the motives of EuFA other than blatant protectionism .

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