UEFA, Europe’s governing body of soccer in Europe, announced on Friday that Manchester City has been banned from European club competition for two years.
Manchester City competes in the English Premier League and is currently reigning back-to-back Premier League champions. The news has shaken the soccer world for a variety of reasons, so let’s break it down.
According to reports, Manchester City misled UEFA and broke financial fair play rules. The governing body slammed City with a $32.5 million dollar fine on top of the ban, showing just how seriously UEFA views the situation.
16Manchester City is not a historically successful club, but the club has risen to elite levels in world soccer during the last decade. In 2008, the Abu Dhabi United Group took over the club and began pumping money into it, transforming it into the powerhouse today.
Now, City has a world-class coach in Pep Guardiola and squad depth that makes almost every club team they compete with extremely envious.
The UEFA Champions League is the most prestigious club soccer competition in the world and is arguably higher quality than the legendary World Cup in terms of on-field quality. The most elite clubs and players attempt to win the famous trophy every season.
However, City has never won the Champions League. City has won multiple league titles and domestic cup competitions in recent years, but the ultimate goal now is to win the Champions League for the first time. That’s the main reason why Guardiola, who last won the Champions League in 2011 with FC Barcelona, went to City in the first place. Now, it would be a shock if he were at City next season. Top clubs around Europe will undoubtedly pursue Guardiola if their particular situation calls for it.
Player recruitment is going to be a tough task to handle as well. City has a lot to offer any player they want: Money, the chance to challenge for trophies every season, and the chance to play under Pep Guardiola. Every player wants to play in the Champions League, but now City cannot offer that to their transfer targets for the next two seasons.
There is always a chance that the ban could be overturned. City will probably appeal the ban, leaving even more uncertainty around the situation. It’s going to be interesting to see how this situation plays out over the coming months.
Photo Credits: Jon Super/ Associated Press
Kyle Soto is a volunteer at The Wolf. Follow him on Twitter @kyledsoto for more soccer content.