Manchester City reportedly expect manager Pep Guardiola to have left by the time they are stung with any sanctions for breaking financial regulations.
WHAT HAPPENED? The Blues have discovered that a four-year investigation carried out by the Premier League has found them to have breached more than 100 rules laid out to those operating in the English top-flight. An independent commission is now examining the case and will determine whether further punishment needs to be handed out.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: City could be deducted points or relegated from the Premier League, but the process is expected to take several years to run its course and Guardiola is unlikely to still be at the Etihad Stadium when a final decision is made and accepted. The Catalan coach has extended his contract in Manchester through to 2025, but The Athletic reports that even those terms may not be enough to see him through to the end of what promises to be a drawn-out saga.
AND WHAT'S MORE: Guardiola has previously suggested that he would walk away from City if they were found to have bent the truth when it comes to financial affairs, with the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss saying: "I said to them: ‘If you lie to me, the day after I am not here. I will be out and I will not be your friend any more. I put my faith in you because I believe you 100% from day one and I defend the club because of that’.”
WHAT NEXT? City are not expecting Guardiola to resign over the charges, with a “business as usual” approach being adopted, and a club that has become accustomed to challenging for major honours over the course of the last 10 years is back in the hunt for Premier League, FA Cup and Champions League crowns in 2022-23.
By Chris Burton
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