Manchester City loses an attempt to keep the FFP inquiry a secret, while Liverpool waits.
Manchester City, the Premier League champions, has lost an appeal that would have kept the facts of their Financial Fair Play investigation into possible violations from being made public.
It’s been two and a half years since City, who reclaimed the Premier League title lost to Liverpool in 2020, was the subject of separate investigations by the Premier League and UEFA, with the latter issuing a two-year ban from European competition to the City Football Group-owned club, which was quashed on appeal by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, with the club also receiving a €30 million fine.
However, the Premier League launched its own inquiry into potential FFP violations, referring to charges made in German tabloid Der Spiegel in 2018 that City had broken FFP regulations by inflating sponsorship revenues, which the club rejected.
The Premier League investigation began in March 2019, and both parties agreed to keep the investigation confidential from the start. However, in August 2019, the Premier League filed a disciplinary complaint against the club, requesting the disclosure of certain documents and information, as well as appointing a commission to hear the case.
The city objected, claiming that the commission’s membership was not impartial or independent. They also protested to the tribunal’s jurisdiction, as they had done with the Uefa probe, and argued the panel lacked impartiality.
In response, the league modified its disciplinary and dispute resolution regulations at a shareholders meeting in February 2020, and the club’s claims regarding jurisdiction and impartiality were rejected by the arbitration panel four months later.
City took the dispute to a commercial court, but the Premier League went on with their case, attempting to compel City to hand over records and information.
City’s appeal to the commercial court was denied in March 2021, meaning the team would have to deal with the league’s own arbitration panel.
The judge also denied City’s and the league’s requests to keep the details of the ruling confidential, so City filed an appeal with the league’s support.
That matter was referred to. “The summary has come to an end.”