Man City FFP: Pep Guardiola ‘leak’ linked to 115 charges with PL expulsion now ‘a realistic outcome’

Joe Williams
Man CIty boss Pep Guardiola
Pep Guardiola could leave Man City at the end of next season.

A former Premier League CEO is convinced the ‘leak’ over Pep Guardiola’s future is linked to the 115 outstanding charges at Man City.

The Citizens lifted their fourth consecutive Premier League title earlier this month with Guardiola’s side deserving of another title after a relentless finish to the season.

Man City were charged in February 2023 with more than 100 breaches of the competition’s financial fair play regulations dating back to 2009.

The club could face a points deduction or even expulsion from the competition if found guilty but Man City have vociferously denied any wrongdoing and vowed to fight their case.

Man City went on to win the Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League Treble last season and are on course to win a Double this term if they can beat arch-rivals Man Utd in the FA Cup final later this month.

To many critics of the club, which is supported by the vast wealth of owner Sheikh Mansour, the Premier League charges cast a shadow over their success.

And there have been reports in recent weeks that Guardiola could leave the club in 2025 when his contract expires, rather than extending his contract at the Etihad Stadium.

The Man City boss said himself that he is “closer to leaving than staying” in an interview earlier this month and former Everton CEO Keith Wyness reckons the “leak” about Guardiola’s future is linked to their financial fair play charges.

Wyness told Football Insider: “This is a really interesting situation with this leak now coming out.

“You’ve got to believe it is somehow linked with these 115 charges. I have no idea whether Man City are guilty or not.

“I’m not making any statements about guilt, but Guardiola has said that he would go if they were found guilty.

“It appears to be a planned separation between the manager and the club, and that makes sense from a PR perspective for him to leave before the verdict comes – so it doesn’t look like he’s being forced out.

“I also think Guardiola has done his time. It can get stale, no matter what a good squad and resources you have.

“It’s the right time to go. Certainly, from a PR look, when these 115 charges are going to be in the media continually – Pep is a pure football man, he wants to maintain his position as a great manager – and it may make sense for them to go separate ways.”

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There has been talk that Man City could face “expulsion” from the Premier League and one sports lawyer insists that it “wouldn’t be just hyperbole” if they were found of guilty of the alleged breaches.

An unnamed sports lawyer told The Athletic earlier this month: “You would have to think that the penalty would be absolutely huge. Expulsion from the Premier League wouldn’t be just hyperbole. It would be a realistic outcome if they were found guilty of the charges.

“If, on the other hand, some of the charges like those involving Mancini aren’t as clear-cut as people think and we’re talking about multiple PSR breaches, you might be looking at a 30-point deduction.

“There are probably four outcomes; they’re acquitted, there’s a huge fine and small points deduction, there’s a huge points deduction or they’re kicked out of the league. But we just don’t know without seeing the in-depth evidence. And just because someone has been charged 115 times, it doesn’t mean they’re guilty.”

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