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On Monday, Manchester City’s Champions League ban was lifted by the Court of Arbitration for Sports, after City took the matter to CAS, following a ruling from UEFA.
Manchester City were sanctioned by UEFA’s club financial control body (CFCB) for breaches of club licensing and financial fair play regulations.
However, City will face no ban punishment for violating Financial Fair Play Rules. Rather, they will now be able to play in the top European competition next season, as long as they pay a €10m fine for their Financial-Fairplay breaking violations.
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, has now sent a message to Premier League rivals to apologise to his club.
Speaking on Tuesday for the first time since the decision was made, Guardiola said: “We should be apologised to.
“We have the right to defend ourselves when we believe what we have done is correct. Three [CAS] judges said this.
“It was a good day for football, as we play with the same rules as all the clubs in Europe. If we had broken the rules, we’d be banned.
“The people [who] say we cheated were lying and the presumption of innocence wasn’t there. Of course, now we are incredibly happy because we can defend what we’ve done on the pitch.”
Eight clubs — Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham, Leicester, Wolves and Burnley — in March, sent a letter to CAS, acknowledging that Manchester City should be banned.
“I know for the elite clubs — Liverpool, United, Arsenal — are not comfortable [with us] being here,” Guardiola added.
“But we deserve to be here and we don’t have to ask permission to be there. When we lose I shake their hands and congratulate them, all the time we have done it. Guys accept it, we wanted to be here and we tried on the pitch. If you do not agree, knock on the door and speak to our chairman and our CEO — don’t go whispering.
“We invested a lot of money, but we did it in the right things. We are not banned, we followed the rules for FFP as they decide. If not, we’d be banned.”
Fortunately for Chelsea, the Blues still have their destiny in their hands to make a Champions League finish for next season.