Manchester City are under growing pressure after it emerged that the Premier League and UEFA have agreed to share information from their separate inquiries into alleged manipulation of sponsorship money.
It is reported by The Times that both governing bodies are investigating Football Leaks documents published by Der Spiegel recently that alleged £59.6 million in sponsorship money that was supposed to come from Etihad was instead paid by the club’s owner, ADUG (Abu Dhabi United Group).
An agreement has been made between UEFA and the Premier League to share any information they discover with each other, with the UEFA probe in particularly dangerous for the Premier League champions.
If UEFA find City to have manipulated sponsorship money or acted dishonestly, the club could face serious sanctions including a potential ban from the Champions League. Given that financial sanctions were already handed to City in their original Financial Fair Play breaches, UEFA believe sporting sanctions would have to be applied.
Some club executives may also face disciplinary charges from UEFA for their conduct in the emails leaked between Simon Pearce and Jorge Chumillas.
One particularly damning email allegedly sent by Chumillas to Pearce and referring to the Etihad deal read: “Please note that out of those 67.5m pounds, 8m pounds should be funded directly by Etihad and 59.5 by ADUG.”