Man City decides to take on Uefa; the result will finally decide who runs football

By Tony Attwood

You wouldn’t really know it from yesterday’s news coverage of football, but all hell has broken loose.  All of the clubs sanctioned by Uefa for breaking FFP reguatlions have agreed to their punishment except one – Manchester City.

And Man City have not just refused to settle – they have refused either to accept their punishment or to go  to appeal.  They simply haven’t answered.

Let me try and put this in context.  In the UK if you get caught speeding in your car you get a fine, through the post.  You can then go and fight the case in court, or you can accept and pay up.  What it is never a good idea to do is ignore the court.  Do that and the case moves from being a minor motoring offence, to a criminal offence.   The courts don’t like being ignored.

But Man City is doing just this to Uefa – telling them through inaction that Uefa is nothing of importance.  Not even worthy of a reply.

To understand this thinking one needs to remember exactly what Manchester City is.  It is in fact part of the PR operation of Abu Dhabi.  Abu Dhabi is an absolute monarchy in a federation of states which in 2012 restricted use of the internet by its citizens because of “activism”.   Democracy and freedom of speech are thus limited, as it is in all absolute monarchies throughout the ages.   Human rights groups claim there is a constant repressive attack on dissent with long prison sentences for those found guilty in trials that look nothing like the trials you might see in the UK.  Pay is historically low, migrant workers are brought in to do these jobs…  It is not quite the slave state that Qatar is, but it isn’t pretty.   

Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan owns the Abu Dhabi United Group, is deputy prime minister of the United Arab Emirates, minister of presidential affairs and member of the ruling family of Abu Dhabi. is on the Supreme Petroleum Council and the boards of numerous investment companies    His power is almighty, and he runs Manchester City.

On May 21, 2013, he bought the rights to Major League Soccer in New York, and already has a club in Melbourne, Australia.  Plus Man City Women’s club (which is actually relevant in what follows).

So my point is that like all top dogs in absolute monarchies the Sheikh and his buddies are not people who are used to be said no told.  Nor are they used to being told that they are liars and cheats.  But that is what has happened, and they have taken it rather badly.

Uefa found that the £151m loss over 2011 to 2013 was outside the FFP limits, and set a deadline of last Friday to accept a €60m settlement to be paid to Uefa over 3 years, plus a limit of 21 players in the Champions League (with restrictions on the number of foreign imports) and a wage cap to the current level.  Not as much as Mr Wenger wanted, but a start.

But what really brightens this affair up is the fact that the sponsorship deal with Abu Dhabi companies and tourist body (with which The Sheikh as part of the absolute monarchy and as deputy prime minister is rather closely associated with), and the country’s tourist authority clearly suggests that the Man City submission was not as straight as it might have been.

And you might well imagine what happens to people who tell absolute monarchs that they are not doing things right.  They get thrown in prison.

Maybe Uefa wanted to back off when they realised that the Sheikh was not going to respond.  But in looking at this, Uefa is being edged along by a number of other forces including Arsenal for whom Arsene Wenger who has spoken out clearly saying that Man City should be kicked out.

He is backed by PSG, who accepted their punishment, Monaco (ditto), Chelsea (who worked hard to get their figures under control but who could be in trouble again next year and who really dont want Man C spending eternally), Everton, who have the right to appeal against Man City’s sentence as they have been materially affected by the fact that Man City have not been ejected.  Also lined up against Man City are most of Germany’s top clubs who have no problems with FFP.

Man U could also appeal, as if Man C were ousted from Europe Man U would get a Europa League spot (if they want it).  Arsenal could appeal on the grounds that if Man C were ejected they would get a place directly in the knock out stage.

But in England the key club is Everton.  Everton could appeal – it all depends if they want Champions League football or not.

And there is more – and more.   One thing that has made Man City’s situation worse was that they brought in the people who wrote FFP and told them to show Man City the back door – the way around the rules.  That has caused annoyance throughout football and outrage in Uefa, suggesting that Uefa were themselves duped by their own accountants.

But where the knife really revolves when it comes to taking on Man City is not just with Uefa’s view that £35m a year sponsorship for naming rights etc is not the price that would have been paid by any other firm.  But with the fact that City earned £47m in 2012-13 from “selling their branding, football and other expertise” to clubs that they also owned!!!!!   These were their women’s team and their New York team.

It is this questioning by Uefa of the way the Sheikh and co have prepared their finances that has so outraged the absolute monarchy and dictatorship.  This is not like suggesting that a company has got it wrong – it is a way of questioning the honesty of the absolute ruler.

Next the case goes to the CFCB’s adjudicatory chamber, which starts the case again.  If they find Man C guilty they impose their own punishment – which could include expulsion from the Champions League.

If Man C win, then FFP is dead in the water and Uefa loses all credibility.  No one will hold back and everyone will cite Man C as the basis on which they have conducted their accounting.  If Man C lose, then there is a real chance that the Sheikh might decide to spend his money somewhere else.  He has clubs in New York and Melbourne.  He could easily buy a few more outside of Europe, and let Man C just get on with it.   He wouldn’t pull out totally, but would just reduce spending dramatically.

This is not going to end in a draw an a nice settlement.  This is now a fight until there is a blood bath.

The books

189 Replies to “Man City decides to take on Uefa; the result will finally decide who runs football”

  1. Wow !

    This is absolutely mind blowing.

    I would never, ever recommend any of my clients (fair enough, none are as big as the Royal Family of Abu Dhabi, but some of them are fairly big) to disregard a juidicial order. First things that springs to mind is contempt, and then the obvious risk of irritating the court.

    Tony – you seem to have more information than what’s out there in the internet. Do you happen to know – did UEFA post a deadline date for responsne / appeal ?

    Also – Aren’t PSG owned by Qatar? This actually shows, in my opinion, that this is not just a case of “I’m a royal prince so you can’t fuckin tell me what to do” story. It is not something borne out of royal spite. This is something calculated and strategically planned. My guess is that there are some things that we don’t know yet, but the fact that they hired ex-Uefa personnel smells very badly. Usually in “our” nice professions (lawyers/CPAs) there are very clear rules regarding conflict of interest.

    Contrary to you I believe that any interference by other clubs would be counter productive. UEFA, as a governing body, cannot be portrayed as enforcing the FFP in order to help a certain club at the expense of another club. In theory, if all clubs which would be potentially affected by City’s expulsion from european competitions, could have collaborated – I would have advised them to keep it quiet and let UEFA handle it alone.

  2. Interesting, if City have ignored this issue, the powers that be have every right to up the anti. City will not be that missed whan you look at the names who will be in the CL next year.
    Entry into the CL is actually by invitation, not by right. Uefa could easily exclude City from their tournament , and like other private clubs, they can let in or exclude whoever they want…within reason of course.
    I have no great admiration for Uefa, but surely they cannot roll over on this one? City are not the be all and end all of world football by any stretch of the imagination.

  3. anyone know the other clubs affected by this…apart from the three mentioned? Have read Liverpool could also be in a bit of trouble after next season with their losses

  4. I hope/think that Uefa will risk everything when it comes to fighting Manchester City.
    The trouble for City is that they are not a ‘big’ name. In fact the football world outside England despises them for the way they run their business. So they will not find any sympathy from other clubs at all. Maybe from the other rich play thing clubs but I doubt it.

    So losing Man City in the CL would not be that important for UEFA. But excluding Man City could be the beginning of the end for Man City. Players will not want to come to just win the PL and have no chance to play in the CL. So players might even opt to go somewhere else and not get as much money any more but have the pleasure of playing in the CL or in Europe.

    It will be living within the rules or outside them. Or it will be FFP rules or the wild wild wild west.

    And given the fact that most countries in Europe and in Uefa don’t want to wild wild wild west…it will be City that will have to change.

  5. Tony – looks like you have a “scoop” here. I have not come across any ref to this in the media and I have been trying to follow this story.

    If as you describe Man City have ignored Uefa – a showdown must follow. Crazy!

  6. TommieGun,

    I agree with your but I have one question: If Uefa budges and Man City have their way, wouldn’t those who suffer from that decision have the right to sue. There is precedence here with Charlton (I think or is it Sheffield United?) suing West Ham for damages in the season when they went down because the latter used a controversially signed Carlos Tevez.

    I agree that for the others to pile on now might give the impression of Uefa being goaded into punishing City for others’ benefit rather than City being punished for breaking the rules. If Uefa fail to punish Man City, I expect a shit storm and litigations.

    What do you think, my learned friend?

  7. I hope that UEFA can both stick to their guns and prevail in this battle of wills, City started their media battle over the issue in the last week by getting their retaliation in first with, amongst others, a major piece in the Telegraph defending City’s spending as an excellent thing for English football.

  8. bjtgooner,

    How are you going to find the story? Our friends in the media have running “mean big bully Uefa are picking on poor little Man City” stories ever since Uefa’s punishment story broke.

    Remember, my good friend, the English media are a bunch of sycophants who would say anything to exonerate the rich and powerful. The British public are not being enlightened about this issue as I am sure that Man City would have very little sympathy or support from them.

    And that, my friend, is why this has been kept on the down low by the media.

  9. @ Bootoome – EXACTLY.

    Let’s say in a public tender when one of the participants’ bid seems to deviate from the tender’s requirements. I would advise my client (another participant) to wait until the tender committee disqualifies the deviating participant. ONLY if and when the tender committee fails to do so, you claim that the committee’s decision NOT to disqualify is unreasonable and causes damage to your client (and the public as a whole, etc…). In the event you are tempted to protest prior to the tender committee’s decision – it would very much backfire, because the deviating participant would contend that the committee is “taking a side”, etc.

    Hope I made it clear.

    And to the real matter: if Tony’s information is solid, then I fully expect City to get fucked, big time. It’s not just legal, there is so much ego involved. Can you really imagine UEFA crawling back into their hole? Can you imagine a governing/juidicial body issuing a sentence which would be more lenient than a plea bargain? Makes no sense to me.

  10. Nice article ,Tony . Am waiting with baited breath and an open umbrella as the shits the fan !
    Guys , have a look at this e-mail that I received today .May be pertinent to the article.


    One morning, when our new teacher of “Introduction to the Rights” entered in the classroom, the first thing that he did was to ask the name of a student who was seated on the first bench:
    “What is your name?”

    “My name is Juan, Sir.”

    “Leave the classroom, and I don’t want to ever see you in my class!” screamed the unpleasant teacher.

    Juan was bewildered. When he got hold of his senses, he got up quickly, collected his belongings and left the classroom.

    All were scared and angry, however nobody spoke anything.

    “Well!” – said the new teacher, “whom do the enacted Laws serve?…”

    We were afraid, but slowly gained confidence and we began to answer his questions.

    “So that there is an order in our society”.

    “No”! The teacher answered.

    “To accomplish them.”


    “So that the wrong people pay for their actions?”

    “No! Is it that nobody knows to answer this question?!”

    “So that there is justice” said a girl timidly.

    “At last! That’s it… so that there is justice. And now, what is the use of justice?”

    All began to feel uneasy by such rude attitude. However, we followed answering:
    “To safeguard the human rights…”

    “Well, what more?” asked the teacher.

    “To differentiate the right from the wrong… To reward the good…”

    “Ok, that is not bad; however… answer this question: Did I act correctly when expelling Juan from the classroom?…”

    All were quiet, nobody answered.

    “I want a decisive and unanimous answer!”

    “No!” we all replied in unison.

    “Could you’ll say I committed injustice?”


    “And why did nobody do anything in that respect? So why do we need Rules and Laws if we don’t have the necessary will to practice them? Each one of you has the obligation of complaining when you witness an injustice. All of you! Do not stay quiet, never again! Go and call Juan,” he said staring at me.

    On that day I received the most practical lesson in my course of Law.

    When we don’t defend our Rights, we lose our dignity, and dignity is not negotiable.

  11. TommieGun,

    Thanks for your response and it is exactly what I thought but it is nice to have it validated by a professional 🙂

    On another point, while I never thought that Uefa would ban any team, I think Man City are playing with fire here. The very few teams that can face Uefa down (Real, Barca, Bayern, Man United etc) are not affected by this rule this season and I am not sure if anyone other than Man City fans are overly fond of or would miss the club in the Champions’ league. I think that they are fighting a battle that they are sure to lose. For fuck sake, these nouveau riche fuckers have only made it into the round of 16 once in their entire existence. Their sense of entitlement is irritating for a team that many outside England barely know.

    I hope they get kicked out.

  12. City would do well just to take their medicine as it stands, tow the line, use their massive academy to produce a few of their own like others do, and live within their now fairly substantial means.
    And be thankful, that accepting things as they stand, they will have got off lightly. Very lightly, as PSG have admitted as much

  13. From the Medical Division of UA – VIRUS ALERT !
    This one might be unstoppable!

    Unfortunately this virus appears to be inevitable, unstoppable, if you don’t have it yet, you will….

    I thought you would want to know about this e-mail virus. Even the most advanced programs from Norton or McAfee cannot take care of this one. It appears to affect those who were born prior to 1950.


    1. Causes you to send the same e-mail twice.
    Done that!

    2. Causes you to send a blank e-mail!
    This too!

    3. Causes you to send e-mail to the wrong person. Yep!

    4. Causes you to send it back to the person who sent it to you. Aha!

    5. Causes you to forget to attach the attachment. Well darn!

    6. Causes you to hit “SEND” before you’ve finished. Oh , no not again!

    7. Causes you to hit “DELETE” instead of “SEND.”
    And I just hate that!

    8. Causes you to hit “SEND” when you should “DELETE.” Oh No!


    Have I already sent this to you or did you send it to me?

    Goodnight , guys .

  14. Manchester City may have the illusions that excluding the winner of EPL from EUFA totally would be such an outrageous prospect for England and the football loving world to take leading to a backlash of bad publicity and outrage against the EUFA. Or, perhaps, they got their confidence from the stuff they were smoking in their board room.

  15. It is outrageous. Man City is ignoring the watered down punishment that the pussies at UEFA are trying to push through. The only good thing here is that even the owners and admin types at Paris Saint-Germain have accepted the pseudo-punishment.
    A hint to UEFA: ask Wigan what to do; after all, they have beat Man City in the 2013 FA Cup final and knocked out Man City from the FA Cup in 2014; Wigan knows how to beat Man City.

  16. But Tony, won’t not responding to the punishment just been seen as tacit acceptance of the order? I certainly would see it like that unless they have a legal obligation to respond in writing.

  17. @{Brickfields G,
    I regularly do all 8 in your list which causes my computer to have a touch of the proverbial vapours.
    The answer?
    Have a daughter and son-in-law who are (a) whizzkids on computers and (b) live close at hand! 🙂

  18. Hmmmm……

    So Everton will decide Man citys fate.

    Everton need money. Bucket loads of it. Shutting their arse up can give them lots more than what a qualification to the CL can give them. Unless Everton want to experience the CL before making an actual attempt…..

    How serious are other club managements is the question….

  19. Great celebrations in Abu Dhabi owners of Man City & Etihad. Many a goat slaughtered and liters of camels milk drunk. Another 5 clubs needed and Sheikh Rattle & Roll can have a round of golf.

    Now do not call us unfair. We stay out of the sun and all that milk keeps us fair. A fine is fine with us. What’s a few barrels of oil between friends. Next season we will play in flip flops and have cooler outfits. We are trying to buy Manchester slowly so that our neighbours do not notice.

    Our manager is lucky. He was going to be dismissed for not buying the FA cup and Champions league. Next season we will have it all…including the world series and crucible.

  20. thanks for the comments everyone.

    My understanding is that Uefa gave Man C the chance to accept or appeal. They could have appealed on the grounds that some vital information was missed, or that the wording of the relevant article in the legislation was wrongly phrased etc. But doing nothing was not actually expected by Uefa. So Uefa sends the case to the appeals body – without an appeal. which is why it starts again.

    There is more on FFP – I will continue with a further article tomorrow – and of course the moment we hear from Uefa or Man City I’ll come back to the story.

    Unless there is a development in the Man C case I’ll present some thoughts on the position of Liverpool tomorrow morning (UK time). In the meanwhile there is Walter’s very interesting analysis of this season, just published.

  21. Look pellegrini is a decent bloke and they spend billion pounds yet can only just win a title

  22. Is it possible that man city are willing to be kicked out of europe?

    they continue to spend, banking on winning the league with no regard to FFP or qualifying in the next few years. their reputation continues to grow from winnings domestically. after five or so years of heavy investment their acedemy begins to pay off, they begin to have plenty of home grown players, they sell off a couple stars to fall in line with FFP and begin playing in europe again this time with a bigger domestic reputation and stronger foundation?

    i know its very much conjecture….but path of thought my mind has wondered to lately…as a potential means to ‘get around’ FFP….in someways chelsea have kinda done this already…

  23. lerner puts aston villa up for sale….

    im a billionaire that wants to buy a football club but want to be able to buy my way into the big boys, but want to avoid FFP.

    i spend heavily on the squad, particularly contracts in order to buy the best. that pushes villa into the top six or so teams in england but also makes them ineligible for europe. i spend heavily on infrastructure, stadium, training complex, academy, top coaches and begin to shift my focus to buy top young players from around the world. after five to seven years of heavy spending i suddenly have a club that is able to begin to start falling back into line with FFP but this time with far better foundation, hopefully some domestic titles and a larger fanbase and reputation….

    is this the way forward for city and other suger daddys?

  24. chelsea have done all that. except with the stadium, but of course infrastructure is not counted in FFP. and they have been one of the biggest pushers for FFP. abrahimovic did it and now seeks to make it harder for others to do…and you can still do it, you just now have to sacrifice european competition for a while.

  25. Agree with Bootoomee. If Uefa balks and do not ban them, all the other teams should sue Uefa.
    I think Manc is the scapegoat to test Uefa resolve, and if Uefa do not see this they are silly, unless they are going to just fine them to get more money in their coffers, but fines are not realistic because that is playing into the hands of the rich clubs who can pay the fines.
    Well at least we got something to ponder alongside the summer transfers.

  26. John L, there is supposed to be a form of FFP bought in by the EPL clubs they are supposed,to adhere to …..whether some will or not is another question

  27. There is no problem for money to grow a club into a mega club. The critical area is advertising/marketing to cover spending on players. Deferring purchase by loan of player can be one way of immediate cost reduction.

    In the case of Man City, the owner does not need to shy away from expenditure. His only mistake is that FFP is unfair to the mega wealthy Arabs. The miserable trailer park owners can fiddle the fuck out of finances and get away with their friends in the same church. The great thing is that their goose (previously inseminated by PGMOL) has not had eggs and with any luck they might go bust.

  28. After the disgraceful punishment about-turn affecting Barcelona, it is becoming abundantly clear that the ammunition now available to big business (formerly known as football clubs) is more than sufficient to overpower a weak and feeble UEFA.
    The totally corrupt FIFA is no source of assistance and the least said about our own FA the better.
    Until one or two powerful footballing nations secede from FIFA thus causing a domino effect, things cannot change and the outlook is depressing indeed.

  29. UEFA allowed Milan to compete in Champions’ League 2006-07 despite Berlusconi’s favourite toy being punished (not severely though) during Calciopoli. Milan won the competition in which they shouldn’t have participated at the first place.

    UEFA won’t kill a cow that brings milk, they wait until the cow dries up. Ask Malaga.

  30. Uefa should finish off with it but I agree that other clubs should not get involved. At least not at this stage.

    If Uefa shows sign of backing down, other clubs should start saying things. When that happens, it won’t be only clubs in UK. The two Spanish giants, Bayern, Dortmund and then others will join in. At the moment, they will leave it as it is.

    This is not a very good move in City’s part. It might surprise Uefa but it just make it worse.

    U play European football then you go to find the organization ie Uefa and listen to the rules. Uefa is not a government. It is a private organization. There is no where in the world which says “A League Champion has a devine right to play in Uefa games”. A person either join in or walk out.

    One may choose not to play or choose to start another league if others want to join you. You make your own decisions.

    When Uefa fail to follow the house rules or they do something against the law, a team may bring legal action against them.

    By ignoring Uefa, City is not giving a chance for Uefa to make a mistake 🙂 That is quite a bad tactical move.

    It does the brand name no good neither.

  31. Fantastic read, thank you
    Yeah you are right, there is this risk that by imposing FFP rules to sheikh, he simply abondone City. Wow, real irony! 2 first places in 3 years and then all the hype gone and big stars leaving, fighting against relegation maybe
    Real irony!

  32. Josif,

    The problem for City is that they are not AC MIlan or anything remotely close. They are not a club with previous 5 triumphs at the competition. They are just a poor England club that first won the lottery through the Commonwealth games (their stadium) which would later attract their billionaire. Despite the huge amount spent, they’ve only reached the CL round of 16 once.

    I initially believed that no team would be banned over FFP because I thought that if big teams (including the likes of AC Milan) are involved, they will be very difficult to kick out. But Man City? It will be a walk in the park for Uefa as I don’t see anyone other than their fans shedding any tears for them. Not especially after other offenders have taken the punishment without any drama.

    I was never in favour of banning teams but now I really hope that they get kicked out. Their sense of entitlement is annoying the hell out of me.

  33. @bootomee As much as I agree with you, I can’t see them being banned. There’s too much to lose in football terms. OK, from where we sit there’s no big history or visible reason to support them. They however are part of the Emirates and have huge clout in sport. There is no problem paying the fine but there must be an issue of being picked on while the likes of Man U & Chelski get away with methods that can also be deemed unfair. My opinion is that the fine will be agreed on and the team will be a full squad as EU law will not permit an unfair employment rule which a squad limitation is.

  34. In my opinion, EU is the world’s most powerful organization not because of the army or weapons they have. Its the liberal and democratic policies and laws they live upon. I think if UEFA fail to practise such laws in football, EU will take action. The English FA cant screw with EU, do you think anybody else can?

  35. menace,

    I beg to differ. In the end, stunts like these can only be pulled by actual FOOTBALL giants which Man City, despite being part of the Emirates are clearly not. Nothing is going to happen if they get kicked out. They don’t have the sort of clout that can lead to boycott and I am not sure that they’d have many sympathisers after other fellow violators have taken the punishment.

  36. A lot of unfounded speculation on here about City refusing to liaise with UEFA. I doubt very much that that is the case and it’s far more likely that we’re still in discussions with them about this proposed punishment and how the club believes that it’s unwarranted. I’ll also add that so far there has been no official word whatsoever from UEFA as to which teams have been punished and what those punishments are – all the info is coming from the media. No doubt something has been leaked but the silence from both UEFA and City is deafening.

    I doubt whether City or UEFA want to go to war on this. The club no doubt believes their independently audited accounts show us as borderline passing FFP but UEFA’s independent auditors see it differently and have (apparently) elected to exclude certain transactions.

  37. City are in fact in negotiations with UEFA rather than at war with them (for now).

  38. “And Man City have not just refused to settle – they have refused either to accept their punishment or to go to appeal. They simply haven’t answered.”

    Because some random blogger has such inside information…

  39. I don’t think I’ve ever seen more unfounded speculation in a single “article”.

    The author, and the commenters, haven’t the first clue what communications are taking place between Man City’s people and UEFA’s people. Yet all see fit to pontificate anyway.

    This jealousy from our fans needs to stop, but it doesn’t help when our manager is as bad. Make no bones about it, if FFP affected AFC we would all be kicking and screaming about its unfairness.

  40. Well if Tony Attwood says City are completely ignoring UEFA then it must be true…

  41. City apparently liased with UEFA over all the sponsorship deals and financials and got the green light from them and independent auditors about FFP and the state of play.

    UEFA then changed the goal posts at the last minute and said we failed, hence the hard line approach.

  42. wishful thinking and imagination from a jealous goon.

    ffp is unfair, anti competitive and the 50m “fine” is as bent as ever witnessed from uefa

    2 years from now no one will remember ffp even existed and all the leagues will be better off and more competitive.

    if uefa want to help clubs, address and punish DEBT

  43. Guys dont get your hopes up, if the system is illegal and goes against EU law, FFP will be at the very least amended and at worst OUTTA HERE!!!
    Tried numerous times to dicuss with Gooners how the system is there to protect the big clubs, but you guys never listem and wont listen to reason so there is no point. Better wait and see what happens then hadnt we! 🙂

  44. Since there has been no official comment from UEFA, no official comment from City, and no-one really knows what’s going on, are we to believe that “Tony Attwood” – whoever he is – has the inside scoop? I find that rather unlikely.

    The article contains a few facts, quite a few errors and some wild speculation thrown in for good measure. No-one really knows what’s going on.

    But whoever he is, its written with the usual anti-City bias. Instead of City bringing in the UEFA FFP team to seek their advice and ensure they stay within the rules, we have “(City) told them to show Man City the back door – the way around the rules”. Did they Tony? You’ve seen the emails presumably?

    One guess that I suspect Tony did get right was that it’s likely the area that’s caused the issues in the IP sales. (The Etihad deal is watertight from an accounting point of view – IAS24 rules on related party transactions – and therefore watertight from an FFP point of view as well, since FFP requires IAS24 compliance and nothing more, with respects to RPT’s.) So it is likely that the IP sales are where the problem lies.

    As to whether they should or should not be allowed under the rules and what this means for City, we will doubtless find out sometime over the coming days/weeks/months.

  45. 1)All of the clubs sanctioned by Uefa for breaking FFP reguatlions have agreed to their punishment except one – Manchester City. LIES

    2)Let me try and put this in context. In the UK if you get caught speeding in your car you get a fine, through the post. You can then go and fight the case in court, or you can accept and pay up. What it is never a good idea to do is ignore the court. Do that and the case moves from being a minor motoring offence, to a criminal offence. The courts don’t like being ignored. so if your in a 50 driving zone doing 49 mph… and the coppers say you drove at 60 you should just say ok faircop?… bollocks you take em to Court and rip their balls off to show that just because they say it…. we want to see them proove it at the ECJ if need be ! So more lies


  46. City might well not be refusing to even negotiate with EUFA but if they are it will because they believe that FFP rules break EU law and they will have said as muhc to EUFA that is not the same as not responding

  47. City wont comply with a ruling that is only there to protect the monopoly of big clubs with their faces in the trough.

    FFP is unconstitutional in law and is therefore illegal,it’s a restriction of trade and needs to be shown as such. UEFA will draw a blank here and FFP will be a thing of the past and a passing joke.

    Good luck City and I hope you win the CL next year.

  48. As a Gooner, even I’m a tad embarrassed by this article. No disrespect intended Tony, but your sources are either impeccable and we are about to witness the biggest fight since Bosman or you are patching together a number of sensationalist articles and coming up with a bit of a jumble?

    As for that part of the world, low pay and conditions etc, come on mate we are sponsored by a huge emirate company and the shirts we wear a stitched together by 9 year olds in far eastern sweat shops. Let’s not try and take some kind of faux moral high ground.

    I hate UEFA almost as much as I hate Spurs as they are no more than puppets of Munich, Madrid and Barca. In my humble opinion and call me a cynic if you like, UEFA and City will reach an accord at some point and that will be that.

    As that halfwit on talksport once said “football’s gone to hell on a handcart”.

  49. All the CIty fans who reckon that FFP is unfair while the way they run is fair, tell me..How do you expect anyone else to compete against the wealth of the Arab state, if you feel it is impossible to compete against clubs who are ‘a monopoly’ just because they have garnered revenues from the CL?

    In your world, the only argument is, everyone should be allowed to get their own billionaire. How many billionaires do you think there are in the world, and how many of them would be willing to sink hundreds of millions into football?

    Even if they do, they’ll just be spending more and more money competing against each other’s wallets, for a prize that is ever more difficult. What do you think happens when they realise that even by their exorbitant standards, the prize isn’t worth the expense? Hard salary caps like in the US? Asset stripping (such as which have already taken place in football much more than the ‘success’ stories like City’s)

    Let’s not pretend any of you are speaking for fairness. There is no way continuing the inflationary and predatory practices are good for any club. Not even City in the long run.

    FFP isn’t even perfect. It’s just a hurried reaction to a problem which has cropped up due to Chelsea, PSG, City etc. But it’s a start.

    And by the way, the argument that FFP is illegal comes from agents I believe – guess why they want FFP to go. Hint: Fairness isn’t at the top of their agenda.

  50. There are a number of comments on this article relating to the fact that FFP is illegal under EU law.

    The relationship between EU law and football regs is something we have considered a number of times on this site – not least because the revival of Arsenal under Wenger came about in part by the application of EU laws on the freedom of movement which the FA and League tried to side step and which Wenger exploited so well.

    I will try and put together an article which looks at that side of things.

    As for the comments about who I am etc etc, I won’t bother with answering. If you start reading an article and then think, “Who the hell is this guy?” in a negative way, surely the best thing to do is to stop reading.

    But for those who carried on reading, as always, thanks for giving Untold a few moments of your time.

  51. Nobody bothered to hurry to react when United/Real Madrid/Barcelona et al were busy sweeping up the talent and having them sit on their benches.

    UEFA are running a cartel and anyone falling in with their thought is either biased or completely oblivious.

    When UEFA start steps to address the huge debt United are lugging about with them then maybe just maybe other football types will start listening.

    City will come to an agreement with UEFA that is suitable to them and it will be an agreed insignificant agreement where blame isn’t apportioned.

  52. Hi Tony,

    Have you seen the statement made by UEFA general secretary Infantino this evening? If not may I suggest you search it out, I await your retraction on this absurd speculation when you do.

    Best Regards,

  53. dazdon

    Just because a ‘law’ gets passed to address a situation at a certain time, doesn’t make the law wrong nor unfair. In any case, nobody was stockpiling talent the same way, nor at the same rate earlier. Please answer the question I asked in my first paragraph in my previous post.

    And if your answer is ‘Get your own billionaire’ then please read my 2nd and 3rd paragraphs and respond again.

  54. So Shard you want FFP because it better in your opinion than everyone having a wealthy owner even tho it protects the current lot thats a very poor argument. City will stop needing our owner very soon if we go on to dominate it will be because of the Champions league money and our own clever management.So its not really about how wealthy our owner is as such he is a catalyst for what we go on to do tho those things would not be possible without him and competition would be less United would be winning far to much if it where not for City Chelsea and Blackburn. If you want fairness fight FFP support redistribution of income on larger scale

  55. Tony the spiv estate agent from Northampton

    Get ready to meet hell…. on top of a few spurs fans !

  56. Shard..

    If you don’t think that United Real Madrid or in fact Barcelona were not stockpiling players then you’re not looking at this from the right angle.Bayern Munich are in the process of hoovering up all the decent talent in the German league as we speak.

    How many times have the cartel of clubs broke world and national league transfer records? How many times have City done the same?

    I suspect you are looking at this from the angle of lost entitlement.

    Fortunately that sense of entitlement isn’t protected by law and City/Chelsea/PSG and any other club with ambitions are at the top table now and one of the cartel members will have to make way.

    Debt is the killer of football clubs not investment.

  57. I see all Tony has said is he will write another article later about FFP and EU law no mentioning of how he knows City are not responding. Perhaps because its made up. No response to the issues raised regarding the wrongful implementation of FFP in regard to City assuming it was legal in the first place. And no mention of how fair or unfair FFP is and no discussion on the matter. Perhaps showing an inherent bias

  58. Will Rickson

    Yes, the CL has created a few problems of its own, but it is no different than say the problem the Premier League has created. Ok, there are no automatic relegations or promotions, but there are no parachute payments either. But the clubs earn the higher money for performance.

    Please answer the question I asked earlier. If you think the CL money is unfair and creates a monopoly, how do you think arguing for a billionaire is anything other than arguing for a bigger monopoly, seeing as there are so few of them and their getting involved with a club is nothing at all to do with merit?

  59. dazdon

    Please answer the question I asked you. and have since repeated twice.

  60. Shard

    I haven’t said that CL money is unfair why are you asking me that?

    If you get it you get it….however it’s crass and underhanded to suggest that Manchester City or any of the other ‘New money’ are responsible for this situation because this situation isn’t new.

    When Littlewoods sponsored the Liverpool push in the 70’s and the transfer records broken by United over the years, these are things that pushed the wages and transfer fees higher and higher.

    Like Arsenal crammed their team full of French talent and Wenger having an opinion of late that some teams haven’t got enough English players.

    It’s hypocrisy pure and simple.

  61. Will Rickson

    by the way.. Supporting redistribution of wealth, I’m all for salary caps. Not for a player, but for a club. Have hard salary caps in place (along with a change in the transfer system, where a contract has to be honoured by the player, and even if he changes club, his contract stays the same, at the end of which he enters free agency) and, then let clubs choose how to spend their money (along with provisions for academy investments etc) It won’t happen. But I’d like it to.

  62. Your assuming that Cities wealth and our owners is the same and that therefore we will walk the league and champions league without FFP. Whilst I am very confident we will come to dominate as much as any team has in recent times which is not very much. It will be based on the skill of the people running the club on his behalf. It wont be any different to Bayern or Barca

  63. Concerning the statement by Infantino, here’s what I think he said,

    “The fact that decisions are not taken the moment when the media expect they are taken, or think they are taken, means simply that the procedure is not concluded.

    “From that point of view, I think what we had to communicate was that there are still nine clubs involved in the investigations with the investigatory chamber. This is still the case.

    “When they either reach a settlement, or reach a conclusion that there is no settlement, then this will be published.

    “I think in terms of deadlines it is still quite well on track, so I am not worried or anxious, or concerned – it is a process.

    “It is normal that in legal proceedings time has to be taken to analyse everything in detailed ways.

    “We are aiming at having a clear picture on what will happen before the start of the next competitions.”

  64. Any argument for FFP is basically saying rich successful business people do not know how to run successful business and need help by some retired footballer

  65. Shard,

    You do know that City’s CEO Khaldoon Al Mubarak is an advocate of salary caps too?

  66. So you think nothing needs to be done to control the inflation in football dazdon?

  67. Shared your using false arguments we are not saying we are against regulation we are saying we are against FFP

  68. How much is a season ticket at Arsenal?

    And why didn’t anyone try to stop this inflation when the cartel had carte blanc to do as they wish?

    You’ve got to admit that this smacks of hypocrisy.

  69. Ronan Lee

    No I didn’t know that. But it doesn’t surprise me one bit. As I said, the future of the billionaire model is a league with salary caps. See the US leagues as an example. They are a closed coterie of businessmen who reduce expenses through salary caps and assure themselves of profits, regardless of any investment.

    Why not just have some sort of curbs on spending now before it becomes a league exclusively of billionaires to do with as they please? Hence my support for FFP (although I realise it has its minuses and isn’t perfect)

  70. FFP is flawed Shard, it punishes investment and does nothing to address debt ( it’s mooted intention to begin with ). I agree something needs to be done but this is not the answer.

  71. Shard.

    FFP will inhibit competition and enhance the big fours place at the top table.

    How will a club compete with the mega wealthy CL clubs if they don’t have an option to buy better players which cost more money?

    How much is an Arsenal season ticket again?

  72. Why are you supporting FFP and salary caps when You only need one of them and FFP protects the current elite clubs and destroys competition? Could it be because your a gooner with a sense of entitlement and miss placed belief in the ability of your club to compete with the big foreign clubs

  73. Will Rickson
    Always good to see City supporters on here as they’re the most informed and non abusive of all the other teams fans. You make the point that if & when the owners leave, City will continue as a top team. I’ve been wondering this myself, as Sheikh Mansour might very well say “bugger all this” and sell up. It looks from where I stand that there is excellent infrastructure in place to continue at this level. with just an issue over the stadium redevelopment. What is the situation there now?

  74. dazdon

    If you think the ticket prices have nothing to do with the inflationary effects of the oilers you are dead wrong. Stop referring to the CL clubs as a cartel. It’s not witty and proves nothing. The PL clubs are a cartel too.

    Look, I agree that there are problems that the CL money causes. Allowing billionaires to distort the market as per their needs is not the answer. That is just creating a bigger cartel.

    And while you might be right that it isn’t new, the amounts are simply unprecedented. If no one tried to stop Arsenal’s (for example) rise when it got the money from the CL, you have to ask why? Do they have a special love for Arsenal and hatred for City? Or is it because these effects are fairly unprecedented, because the numbers matter. An inflation from 1million to 10 million is 10 times, but only 9 million. An increase from 10million to 100million is also 10 times, but is 90 million more. It makes a difference, and hence the need for a response.

  75. Shard…

    The big clubs who bought into the CL are a cartel whether you like it or not.

    But you know that Arsenal were part of that cartel so as I said earlier it directly affects you.

    Did you know that MCFC have the cheapest season ticket prices and Arsenal the most expensive?

    I’m glad that City are ruining football for City fans to that degree and aren’t using fans as a cash cow.

    Hey but if you’re happy with it.

  76. Basic work is underway now that planning is passed. first phase done in two years second phase done in the following two years. taking us to about. Arsenal size ground. Then East and West side current largest stands could be done taking us to about Old Traford size ground. Only suggestion tho. The more interesting thing is the campus the non training facility part. World class leisure destination of international significance to turn East Manchester into a second City center using about 200 acres of land in total

  77. Ronan Lee

    Doesn’t FFP have some provisions for only having losses upto a lesser amount unless there is an injection of equity? As I said it isn’t perfect. But it doesn’t stop investment. It curbs it to make the money come in in a larger timeframe. It’s like a fiscal policy basically.(or is that monetary policy – been a while since I read any economics) Control the money supply to prevent the economy from entering a bubble and then crashing.

    FFP also doesn’t prevent clubs from investing in infrastructure. I suspect the reason they couldn’t put in debt is because not all debt is the same. ManU’s debt from their LBO is very different from Arsenal debt. But how do you define this? Besides, debt isn’t an industry wide problem (some clubs suffer from it, and the national league make up their own rules to protect the clubs) The unsustainable investment is.

    Nothing will ever be completely fair. Some clubs build their own stadia, some get them gifted to them by the state. Some have favourable laws on taxes in their country, some get easier access to certain markets etc etc. So no, there is no absolute fairness. I don’t expect that. I do think that curbing the limitless spending is good for football. Much better than the alternative where sport gets reduced to a battle of the wallet due to ever increasing costs. (Like I said, the amounts matter, not just the concept) So, if FFP does limit that, I think it is a step in the right direction, though no doubt it’ll need tweaking.

  78. dazdon

    I also know that you can buy a meal for two in Manchester for 6 pounds. Didn’t taxpayer Arsenal fans also pay for your stadium by the way? Like I said above, nothing is ever completely fair. An argument on that basis is futile. What matters is which course is better.

    Sure, they are a cartel just like the PL clubs are a cartel. I just meant that it isn’t clever calling it a cartel because it proves nothing. At the least, with all its flaws, the CL cartel makes a case for meritocracy. The billionaire cartel does nothing of the sort.

  79. But Shard its not the battle of the wallets as such its more accurate to say the battle of the wallets whilst we build a decent team then we do not need to use our wallets just that of the clubs. Which would only be big if we had used our wallets

  80. FFP happens naturally. Abramovich and the Sheik would never spend and loose money forever

  81. The reason debt was not included was because that would go against the interest of the old guard

  82. No debt at City only investment and no danger to the club and no risk of the owner leaving for a very very long time. I would suggest he will be here till at least 2030

  83. Will Rickson

    Never spend and lose money forever. Just whenever they want to destabilise the rest of the clubs. Predatory practices.

    It is completely possible to build a team using lesser amounts of money, but do it over time rather than in 4 years. Which is what FFP will curb. Hopefully.

  84. Will

    Yes. It’s great for City to win that lottery. It’s not great for the rest of football, nor is that model something most clubs can aspire to. Many of those that have have been burned by false promises, and like I said, there aren’t enough billionaires to go around. You got lucky, but that just means that you can’t be allowed to indiscriminately distort the market to your benefit.

  85. Should other clubs not get on with their own business rather than interfering in how other clubs are run and trying to do things they cannot do for whatever reason and compete with people they cannot compete with. Your argument seems to be that Burnley say need FFP so they do not go bust trying to compete with the sugar daddies. Because FFP will stop them and the Sugar daddies going crazy. Are you telling me that without FFP Burnley are that stupid. If not then how are we destabilising clubs. Also we are no more preditory than anyone else at the top of football. And why should our club miss out on the money be building slowly assuming that even possible give that the best players from youth would just get poached

  86. And even if it where possible why should anyone outside a club dictate to another club how to run. I would not tell you how to invest in a business or how not to. And you would not want Tesco telling your corner shop how to invest would you especially if the investment was then limited by What Tesco made the corner shop do

  87. How are City bending the market when they don’t even hold the title of British transfer record transfers or indeed individual wage earner?

    Do you feel uncomfortable that your club spent more on one player than let’s say Norwich did in two season?

    The only teams that Man City affected by competing against their financial muscle were the top 4….the same top 4 who have had it too good for too long.

    If any Villa fans are out there I hope you get a fat wallet and you start tasting some success because you are one of the teams that languished like City did.

  88. Will Rickson

    Whatever, I feel we’re become circuitous in our discussion now. The fact remains that in my opinion, the unrestrained spending of a ew clubs who have no obligation to run as a business, is not good for the sport. I am aware of the CL money causing some disparities and would like these disparities to go, while at the same time having the notion of reward for endeavour. A billionaire model negates that, and forces the costs up for everyone else while at it.

    So anyway, we can agree to disagree, I have to go.

    Lastly, none of us know how the FFP will turn out. We just have to wait and watch. It might turn out to be useless. To be even more harmful, or be the start of something getting closer to fairness. I hope it;s the latter, but am aware that it could go wrong. At this moment in time, I am willing to give it a chance because there is no way the billionaire model is good for the sport.

  89. Am I right in saying that we will be running even by next years accounts Will?

  90. dazdon

    Oh please, clubs like Chelsea and City have increased prices for every club everywhere. Twist the numbers around however you like, you went on a spending spree that is as unprecedented as it was deserved. Get over it that people say it like it is.

    The one thing the PL does right is have some equality in TV rights. With growing TV popularity, the money from TV has increased, as has the exposure across the world, which means commercial incomes have increased for all clubs too. This means that the CL money is a lesser percentage than it was before. It’s still significant, but not insurmountable. What you are arguing for is a richer monopoly, with no place for merit or hard work. Only dreams of winning the ownership lottery. I don’t think those are things which any right minded intelligent person should stand for and i think it is bad for sport.

    Ok I’m off. Thanks for the discussion. We can agree to disagree.

  91. SIgh..Last one

    Will.. I didn’t say you aren’t run like a business.. I said you have no obligation to.

  92. We might have pushed up prices but only at the top end in theory. And we do not spend the most on individual transfer fees and our wages structure is changing and improving. If you want cost control go for wage caps and transfer cap not FFP. by they way these would also break EU law

  93. Whatever arguments from Man City fans and supporter, we people of UAE are subsidizing your season tickets and the club. While many knew about the riches in Dubai , there are increasing poverty in the nation. These silly investment with zero return will be ceased one day. I applaud the sustainable model at Arsenal and Man U, where they find their own money.

  94. Given we are run like a business we therefore have limitations on spending so whats the point in ffp.

  95. Strangely Arsenal fans were not that interested when the monopoly was guaranteed.

    Manchester City football club will soon be self sustainable and I for one do not want to pull the ladders up for any other aspiring club to emulate success in the same way.

    When the top 4 were smashing transfer records and taking OUR players nobody made a sound, now that UEFA have gotten a shot of Gillitis they suddenly start making noises.

    It’s no secret in football that the richest clubs in football have always had a better chance of being successful, isn’t that why Ozil was bought with an obscene price tag?

  96. Whatever the merits of this article I’d just like to say to all the City fans that have taken the time to comment on this article, please don’t insult our intelligence by trying to pretend that having an Arab State using you as a National advertising campaign is in some way all about fairness and equal opportunity. What tosh.

    It’s simply about a Nation State spending a Billion quid or more to buy titles and Trophies, in the highest profile League in the World, in order to increase it’s stature and wealth.

    You are a marketing toy.

    It could of been any Club, you was just unfortunate it was you.

    That’s right, unfortunate, so no I am not jealous.

    But I am pissed off that what the ‘oilers’ have done, has been allowed to happen, because it has had such an adverse effect on the Club I love, and I believe, an ultimately damaging long term effect on the Premier League as a whole.

    I would of much rather yourselves, and the £1 Club from West London, had actually run your Clubs a little better over the previous 15 years or so years and not sacked there managers about once every 12 months, and had instead built your Clubs with a good board, enlisting good managers, buying good players, playing good football.

    I mean that’s quite a good way to do it don’t you think?

    Who stopped you doing that?

    Was it Man Uniteds fault? Arsenals fault?

    I suppose it was there fault you couldn’t run your Club properly was it? Come on !

    So please, don’t pretend it’s about ‘Giving the small Clubs a chance’. It’s about buying your place at the table as opposed to earning it.

    When the lucrative premiership started up, yourselves, Chelsea, Spurs, Liverpool, Everton, etc. where all in exactly the same position as us, but you cocked it up. That’s the truth of the matter.

    You missed the boat and it’s YOU that got jealous. Jealous of your brilliantly run neighbours rubbing your delicate little blue noses in it for 20 years.

    So rather than coming over here getting all defensive, just admit you messed up. You messed up and you cant be bothered to put the graft in to EARN your place in the ‘elite’ group, as you like to call them. Just admit you’ve bought your way in and you’re going to carry on buying it and you’re perfectly happy to keep on buying it.

    But please, stop kidding yourself your some kind of martyr to the cause because you’re fooling nobody.

  97. City fans. Please do grow up. Those clubs worked for their income, even if you feel they created a ‘cartel’. Your club, has done nothing. Don;t get upset when people say that, because it is quite frankly, the truth. Sorry to be blunt, but that is there.

    FFP isn;t aimed at City. City caused it to happen. Sure, claim moral high ground by saying you’d like another club to experience what you’ve experienced. You can say that knowing that the odds of that happening are extremely less.

    Also, you refuse to acknowledge the impact Chelsea and your club have had on inflation, and refuse to acknowlege that you are arguing in favour of an even richer, even more exclusive cartel of billionaires.

    The argument that Arsenal fans weren’t concerned about FFP before FFP was even coined seems strange. Largely, football fans didn’t care about finances earlier. It is only since Chelsea entered and went on a spending spree like never seen before, that money became the hot topic of discussion with all fans needing to become economists to some degree (some feel they are experts now because of that)

    So no, no one cared about excessive spending before, because it was never that excessive. It had nothing to do with the fact that City were struggling to reach the premier league or otherwise. It has very litte to do with MCFC now. It has everything to do with the billionaire involvement causing distortions in the market.

    Do I deny that the CL clubs are looking out for their interests? Of course not. Of course they will. I just feel that the billionaire model is worse for what it’s potential consequences on football. I don;t want to see 100m pound players and 500k/week obscene salaries. I would rather that money be spent on more worthwhile causes. FFP is a way to curb the inflation. It isn;t perfect. It isn;t devoid of clubs looking out for themselves. But it is something. I’ll take that over nothing.

    Anyone arguing against that, is arguing due to a vested interest. Sure, I have vested interests too. But I happen to be more ‘right’ than those that support the billionaire model, especially those that obfuscate the effects and possible effects of it.

    Adios.. Goodbye and thanks for all the fish.

  98. There is another aspect to this which City fans need to consider. Chelski were one of the first clubs to throw around unearned income to buy a top team. They inflated prices and wages – not just for the top players – that inflation worked its way throughout the game.

    However, Chelski set a precedent that (only) the exclusively rich could follow – as Man City have – and then some.

    But, Chelski managed to get their accounts into sufficient order to comply with the present FFP regulations, City so far have not. Has Chelski set you guys up – even if they haven’t, Chelski must be laughing at you.

  99. Bjtgooner not sure why your talking about cheslea and ffp given they had longer to comply effectively and we will make more money than them

  100. Shard your confusing me very very much your not happy with FFP your not happy with infaltion why not support the other better options that are not FFP? instead of protecting the elite has beens from competition and regulation and stop being bias and anti-city

  101. Jambug yes we messed up and missed the boat but it would have been near impossible to make up for it it might never happen is that fair ?

  102. Will – because, as outlined above, City followed their spending model – but did not tweak spending to comply with the present FFP requirements. Yes, Chelski started well before you, but everyone had sufficient warning of what was coming.

    Don’t think I have any time for Chelski – I certainly don’t – but they will be laughing at you.

  103. – bjtgooner, How did you come to those conclusions? obviously just reading tabloids or gossip.

    City have year on year cut there wage bill since the peak, last close winder we cut £30m+ off the wage bill alone, and we’re not paying the stupid money other clubs are demanding anymore ( See Cavani ) and we’re not being fleeced by agents any more.

    All in all, we are moving very much in the right direction and we will be self sustainable when the 2013/2014 books are released.

  104. Will Rickson

    Why near impossible?

    Spurs and Everton have both broken in to the top four.

    Obviously not as impossible as you claim.

    No Club out side Chelsea City or United have won the league since we last did it.

    So we’ve gone from an ‘elite’ that was tough to break into but by no means impossible, with good management and patience, to an ‘elite’ that IS impossible to break into unless you either have a BILLIONAIRE owner or run the real risk of bankruptcy al la Liverpool.

    Well done, you’ve really solved this ‘elitism’ quandary there haven’t you.

    Stop fooling yourselves lads you’re just starting to look silly now.

  105. @Tonka

    You state – “we will be self sustainable when the 2013/2014 books are released.” – this means you admit you are not sustainable now.

    You state – “we’re not being fleeced by agents any more.” – this means you admit you have been paying too much to agents.

    You state – “we’re not paying the stupid money other clubs are demanding anymore” – this means you admit you have overpaid for players.

    You state – “City have year on year cut there wage bill since the peak,” – this implies City have payed inflated wages.

    I am not contesting the validity or otherwise of your comments – but your comments alone imply that City have followed the Chelski spending model – and that you know this. What is your problem?

  106. jambug –

    “Spurs and Everton have both broken in to the top four.”

    Spurs and Everton both had 1 season in the top 4 before having there star players poached by other clubs and dropping back out of the top 4.

    Breaking into the top 4 doesn’t mean a 1 season fluke, it means regularly, if not season after season.

  107. Jambug your assuming me not supporting FFP is me supporting things as they where before. Look at it another way without Chelsea City and Blackburn United would have had far to many trophies. And you would be 10s of millions less wealthy after ripping us off and so have more debt to pay off same could also be said for Everton and Villa

  108. Will Rickson.

    yeah I know, we fleeced you.

    Honestly lads, listen to yourself.

  109. Honestly, I thought the Chavs where in denial but this lot are unbelievable.

  110. bjtgooner – my points we about “but did not tweak spending to comply with the present FFP requirements” when we have clearly tweaked our spending to try to comply with FFP.

    I have no argument that we did follow the Chelsea model, and I have no problem with it, we spent a large sum of cash to gain success so we could get to the point where we wouldn’t have to pay the stupid money and from my perspective the main thing was so that the youth players would actually come to the academy, There is no doubt in my mind we over spent at the start, and most City fans I know agree. but it was necessary to get to where we are.

    If anything FFP accelerated our spending to try to comply before it came in, I think it was Gary cook that stated we condensed a 10 year spending plan into 3, although at the time didn’t say why.

    Out next step is to show a path from the Academy to the 1st team to try to get the best youth players in.

  111. bjt the point is regardless of what model we follow or we implement that model we are going to be self sustainable and not just that but very profitable so whats the issue we are in no risk to our selfs why should we be dictated to by others when we are looking after our selfs Would you allow Tesco to dictate what a corner shop can and cannot do to compete with tesco and turn it self into something bigger and better than tesco ?

  112. And the Chelsea model was really the only model available in the early stages anyway

  113. @Will

    you would be 10s of millions less wealthy after ripping us off, how does that even make sense?

    Without your sugar daddy you had no money!!!

  114. Thats the point you would not have been able to sell the uselss kolo and Ad to us and so would have less money and more debt our owner and the lack of FFP did you favor and also helped EVerton fact is you and them needed the money more than the players

  115. @dan without Sheikh Mansour we had Administration. we were literally days away from it thanks to Shinawatra, At least his contacts got us in with Sheikh Mansour tho:)

  116. This article is based on ill-informed guesswork.

    The “adjudicatory chamber” is the last place any punishment can be decided before the case moves on to to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
    Everton will have no part to play in the decision of the chamber not will any other club.

  117. @Will

    Actually you needed the player and spent unwisely!


    What happens if the Sheikh does one?

  118. The fact you even suggest he is going to do one is laughable.Also as we have said we will break even next year

  119. dan, He wont, there would be far to much face lost if he did. but even if he did we would be fine now ( 2013/2014 books ), if he had done a runner 1 or 2 years back we would have been back where we started, administration.

  120. @Will

    I’m not suggesting at all, all I’m asking if the Sheikh does one, what then?

  121. Love you Arsenal fans frothing at the mouth over FFP.
    It’s very funny and incredibly humorous.

    First: City have said nothing. All leaks have come from UEFA and NOTHING has happened so far. Indeed City have been leak free since the 2008 takeover so all leaks have come from UEFA.
    Second: The reason for the delay is obvious if you care to bother looking at the actual implementation of FFP. MCFC have spent the last 4 years talking to UEFA on a near weekly basis as to the exact meaning of FFP rules and regulations and how MCFC revenue streams comply with these regulations. It is very much a case of “Keep your enemy closer”. If you think that every single meeting has not been minuted and actions against both parties (City and UEFA) logged and followed up then you are living in a dreamworld. And yes unlike PSG City have at least tried to comply with FFP.
    Third: FFP follows ISA accountancy standards pretty much word for word. So if you think Etihad and City ARE related parties you are so wrong it is untrue. If UEFA try and go against this they haven’t a leg to stand on.
    Fourth: The interesting thing will be what Swiss PWC LLP (UEFAs “forensic” accountants) said about the MCFC accounts and how the UEFA CFCB (star chamber) has interpreted this information.If it violates points 1,2 & 3 above then UEFA are fecked in the CSA let alone in a court of law.
    Fifth: There is not a cat in hells chance of FFP complying with European Competition Law. Simply stated Investment must be allowed by FFP that is greater than the income received from the participation in European Competition NOT 1/3 of the income from participation in the Champions League. How much greater than income is a mute point. Arsenal and Manchester United final history would seem to suggest 150% is the minimum cap.

    City will have responded to UEFA. they will have losted all the above points. UEFA are now talking to their lawyers and I guess from the delay the lawyers are telling them they haven’t git a leg to stand on

    So enjoy it folks. Lets be honest at the end of the day City have a billionaire who has invested in City while Arsenal have two billionaires who haven’t invested in Arsenal. So aim your bile in the right direction.

  122. And we have said many times on here Dan that we will be fine soon anyway with or with or without him

  123. @dan By my estimates ( working out how much we have saved on Wages in the last window, how much we paid Mancini which was counted as wages on the books, and how much our revenue will increase just from the new TV deal ) we will be about £50/60m in the black on 2013/2014’s books.

    so would be fine if he left now, maybe have to sell 1 big star to try to finish off the acadamy, but then we could go to the banks and get loans for that as they dont count towards FFP.

  124. What do you mean assets what assets ? Do you not know what assets are?

  125. bjtgooner

    Can I just point out that a club doesn’t have to be self-sufficient to pass FFP? Surely you’re aware that there are allowable losses up to a certain figure so why have you got an issue with City not being self-sufficient for another 12 months? Also, I’ll remind you that none of us even know for sure whether City have failed FFP yet. I stated earlier that the club believes that once the pre-June 2010 contracts are added back then our accounts show a borderline pass (accounts that have been independently audited by the way). Now it might be that UEFA’s independent auditors hold a different view and that’s fair enough. However, what I won’t accept is the notion that some people have that City have completely ridden roughshod over FFP. Even Platini was quoted last year as saying that we have been making “big efforts” to comply.

    As for City’s spending model, it’s your prerogative to disagree with it all you want but football has always had it’s haves and have-nots and as far as I can see there has never been any rules (prior to FFP) set in tablets of stone as to what is a right or wrong way to run a football club. City fans will be only too happy to admit we got lucky when Mansour bought our club but to counter that it can be legitimately argued that we got unlucky when we were saddled with 20 years of Peter Swales turning the club from one of the top 2 or 3 in England to a complete and utter laughing stock. But that’s all part of football’s rich tapestry mate and as football fans, we just have to take the rough with the smooth.

  126. Bloody Android keyboard the Fifth point should have read as follows (with additional clarifications)

    Fifth: There is not a cat in hells chance of FFP complying with European Competition Law. Simply stated Investment must be allowed by FFP that is greater than the income received from participation in European Competition NOT 1/3 of the income from participation in the Champions League as FFP states. The FFP rules as-is create a cartel of CL qualifiers. How much greater than income a cap can be is a mute point. Market history of Arsenal and Manchester United would seem to suggest 150% of CL revenue is the minimum cap and 300% is the maximum cap.

  127. @Dan, will take me too long to compile them all here as am currently at work but a general jist is.

    Mancini and his staff got about £25/30m pay off.

    Wages: Balotelli, Tevez, Kolo Toure, Bridge, Santa Cruz, Maicon (there are more but this is the top of my head ) all left in the last window, all was very high wage earners, replaced by much lower wage earners, I calculated it as about a £30m a year saving ( based on Tabloid figures obviously as thats all thats available ).

    so thats about a £55/60m saving.

    The new TV deal is supposed to add an extra £40/50m a year too.

    So at a lower estimate we should be £100m better off on the 2013/2014 books, which would put as at about £50m in the black.

    This is all based on whats in the public domain so is open to errors.

  128. Thought we where going to be break even based on what people at city say not profit tell next year Tonka ?

  129. @Will It depends on your view of profit. I usually go with the term self sufficient as to me profit suggest that Sheikh Mansour has made his money back, which is a long long way off.

    Self sufficient meaning we as an entity can run and continue to grow without external funding.

  130. Are you trying to be silly dan the clubs the club owns the players not the sheik the club owns the land the club owns other things

  131. @Will Yep, ideally break even but my maths ( tabloid sourced ) suggest we will be better off than that. here’s hoping:)

  132. Tonka i am not disagreeing with you about profit and sustainability but saying your a year a head of what has been said by the people at City regarding profit. they say break even this year profit year after your saying profit this year

  133. @Will Ah ok, Ta for the heads up. may have to go digging for that info when I get chance.

  134. @M18CTID

    I did not state that a club has to be self sufficient – that possibility for City in the future was raised by Tonka – I re-quoted it to him.

    However, if you have a limited permitted loss under FFP then the rest of your income has to be sustainable or at least permissible within the regulations.

    Yes, we do not yet know the outcome of the present negotiations, but there must be some reason why UEFA are looking at your balance sheet, but not at Chelski’s.

  135. Have you factored in for loss of IP sale rights and the left over costs of player contracts and the cost of new players

  136. bjtgooner – Chelski’s books are fine for FFP as they did most of there spending before the monitoring period, but one thing they did which we didn’t do, was jettison there aging hi earning players, probably paying them off very nicely the year before the monitoring period started so deflated there wage bill massively.

  137. bjtgooner

    You appeared to be having a pop at the fact that we’re not yet self-sufficient even though we are on target to be in 12 months time. I’m not sure what your point was?

    I don’t disagree with your last paragraph – on the face of it, we’re sailing a lot closer to the wind than Chelsea as things stand with the respective accounts of each club. However, just consider this thought – Gazprom sponsor Chelsea, and Abramovich used to be a shareholder in that company as far as I know. Has that deal been scrutinised by UEFA or have they turned a blind eye to it? After all, Gazprom are also a major sponsor of the Champions League….

  138. @M18CTID I bet if Etihad sponsored the Champions league we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

  139. Tonka,

    Precisely the point I was making. Having said that, I’m not sure the Etihad deal is the one that UEFA are rumoured to be concerned about but this Gazprom issue definitely raises questions about conflicts of interest, etc.

  140. @M18CTID

    I was not having a pop at lack of self sufficiency; I was helping Tonga clarify his thinking.

  141. Are these silly Arsenal fans really suggesting that we should have done as well as Chelsea balancing the books how long have they had at the top. Just because they have longer to comply effectively does not mean City have made less effort to comply

  142. I can perfectly understand what Will’s argument. Matter of fact, he has to defend investment from the Sheik since Man City would have gone into administration without the oiler. Based on his suggestion, an ambitious Arsenal has to look for the richest Man on earth or we will demise since FFP isn’t fair. A high-state of self-denial from a Citizen fan.

  143. jambug

    City fans claiming to be martyrs? I think you’ve got that spectacularly wrong – if anything, it’s some of the fans of the so-called elite clubs who are claiming that they want FFP for the overall good of the game when the real truth is more likely that you (and your clubs) favour FFP primarily for reasons of self-preservation. I seriously doubt that many Arsenal, United, and Liverpool fans gave much of a toss when Pompey almost went under. A bit more honesty wouldn’t go amiss on that score.

    As for the rest of your post, well done for spotting that City have been a badly run club in the past but you’re implying that us fans are somehow responsible for that and as such are less deserving of seeing success than yourselves which is a shocking thing to say in all honesty. I can assure you that every City fan will readily admit that we got lucky when Mansour bought the club but conversely it can be argued that we got unlucky when we were saddled with 20 years of Peter Swales at the helm. In that time he turned City from one of the top 3 clubs on the country to a complete and utter laughing stock. I’ll also remind you that once upon a time Arsenal were so badly mismanaged that you almost went to the wall and then your sugar daddy Norris came riding to the rescue. You won’t get me having a go at the Arsenal fans back then for how badly their club was run. It wasn’t their fault, just like it wasn’t the fault of our fans when Swales was destroying our club, or Pompey’s fans, etc, etc.

    I don’t think you did mean it to sound like that in all honesty but a bit more humility wouldn’t go amiss. The original point is that this was a poorly written article full of conjecture and it needed pointing out. Anyway, you should be thanking us for stopping Liverpool winning the league and saving the country from the insufferable gloating that would’ve no doubt followed 😉

  144. M18CTID

    Anyway, you should be thanking us for stopping Liverpool winning the league and saving the country from the insufferable gloating that would’ve no doubt followed – Wholeheartedly agree.

  145. dan,

    Just like Arsenal did 25 years ago 😉 Despite the deterioration in relations between City and Arsenal fans over the past few years, Michael Thomas popping up in the 92nd minute on May 26th 1989 to win you the title remains my all-time favourite non-City footballing moment. The national media were clearly favouring a Liverpool title win and Arsenal were being viewed in many quarters as merely guests at Liverpool’s title party. I didn’t have any real dislike for Liverpool at the time but I found the media’s obvious bias totally disrespectful to Arsenal and I cheered that 2nd goal almost as much as I’ve cheered important goals for City down the years.

  146. MCity fans can be thankful the loans were converted and still being converted to equity, they can operate knowing their owner cant ask for his money back, which begs the question WHY do people accept to converting debt to equity in the first place, the security of your money is gone, yes there is an opportunity for earnings in future, but that would only hold true if your assests aren’t frozen. If for some political reasons, Abhudhabi family members are ostracised by the world like some Russians are facing it now, then the owner has to sell up and go early – his equity – there by loosing the chance to part take in the future profits.Which again begs the question WHY, they should’ve gotten something in return for converting debt to equity, wonder what that is.

  147. The one thing in City’s latest accounts that seems to have caused the biggest storm is the sale of IP rights to related parties. I’ll admit to not knowing much about that kind of transaction but a City fan who is familiar with these kinds of deals posted the following some months ago which may go some way to explaining that this isn’t necessarily an attempt to manipulate the figures and is actually a practice that is commonplace. It’s a long read so I can’t blame anyone for not being arsed about reading it lol but here it is:

    “This IP business has created a bit of a storm, and it seems to me that a lot of people think it’s just a ruse City have plucked out of the air to cut down our losses. However, it’s quite common in the way that global holding companies run their business when they have subsidiaries in a number of different countries, and this is the set-up that City are creating.

    In essence, what we’re dealing with here is a device where a company forms a subsidiary to carry out operations in another territory, and they enter into what’s called a cost sharing arrangement (CSA). Under this kind of arrangement, the companies share intangible costs that will be separately exploited by each of the participants.

    Thus, for example, where R&D is carried out by the head office but will benefit all group companies, they all chip in for it in proportions that are in line with the proportions of the anticipated benefits they can expect to derive. This, I think, is why Ferran specifically mentioned recently that NYCFC will have use of City’s international scouting network and commercial operation. They’ll pay for it too, and those areas of MCFC’s activity are world leaders so the services in question probably won’t come cheaply.

    Secondly, when a CSA is set up, you’ll quite commonly find that one company already owns intangible assets which it then makes available to the others, and those others will benefit when they carry out their operations in future. This is very frequently met in the context of intellectual property. Let’s say that company A sets up a subsidiaries B and C to manufacture and sell company A’s products (whether that’s chocolates or cigarettes or cosmetics or something else) in territories D and E. If company A is a well-known global brand, subsidiaries B and C have much better prospects if they sell the goods under company A’s trademark(s)than if they sell the same goods under completely unknown brand F. This will be reflected in revenues down the track.

    The standard way of dealing with this is for company A along with subsidiaries B and C to create a CSA, and for subsidiaries B and C to do something that’s known as “buying in”. This means that they pay a lump sum at the inception of the CSA for future use of the rights. And later, when the CSA is up and running, if company A develops and makes further intangibles available to the participants in the CSA, then a further buy-in (often called an “acquisition buy-in”) takes place.

    The rationale of this is that by settling things in this way at the outset, the parties can move on knowing that they’re on an even footing with one another in terms of using intangible property belonging to one another. As they move forward, it’s therefore fair for the subsidiary companies to keep all the profit they generate rather than having to remit part of it to pay off a debt owed to the parent company.

    I work for Russia’s biggest law firm and, trust me, we meet arrangements like this all the time for the Russian subsidiaries of multinationals. It’s absolutely the standard way to deal with the kind of situation City are now in where they’re trying to build up the ‘City Football Group’. I don’t see it as something we’ll have done simply to meet FFP, though of course the knowledge that we have this money coming in will no doubt have informed decisions about our levels of spending on transfer fees and the wage bill.

    Obviously to the extent that sales are to related parties these must meet a fair value test under FFPR. However, this also mirrors something that our clients face when they use CSAs: these expenses are deductible for profit tax purposes but also, when with related parties (which they invariably are), only to the extent that they reflect the market value of the rights in question.

    Here clients take advice from independent specialists who value the rights for these purposes. The valuations are subjective to some degree, of course, as these things always are. But generally if you follow the recommendations of recognised neutral experts and can provide detailed reasoning as to why the figure you’ve picked represents an arm’s length value, the tax authorities tend not to get very excited.

    I find it very difficult to imagine that City aren’t doing something similar in relation to FFPR, and that should probably see us right when it comes to UEFA. And while we’re doing something that’s uncommon (maybe unprecedented) in the football industry, that’s because the notion of subsidiary clubs is new as well. However, ultimately I don’t think we’ll see a comeback from handling that in a way that’s entirely in line with standard global practice for similar undertakings.

    It seems to be that there’s a lot of hysterical press about this – stories along the lines of “City cheat FFPR with huge IP con”. Actually, I think the truth is a little different.”

  148. Fascinating debate. It seems nobody is really certain FFP will work. Some Arsenal fans would do well to remember that under Chapman, our greatest ever manager, money was no object. If he wanted a player he spent the money. His intention was to make Arsenal the biggest and best. Can’t really blame City and Chelsea attempting to do the same can we? Of course many of us are jealous, we just like to pretend we are overseeing things from a high moral ground, which is ridiculous in football where morals are as unpleasant as pips in a lemon meringue pie.

    It’s even more frustrating when we have two billionaires backing our club who won’t put their hands in their pockets but that’s the way it is. That notwithstanding we appear to be a well run business and I am beginning to think are on field business might begin to draw level with our off field business in the near future. Certainly our bank balance is overflowing so we can now spend more freely.

    City, as far as I can see, seem to be planning for a self-sustainable future. The same cannot be said of Chelsea, it appears.

    Personally I’d rather billionaires, and that includes the two at Arsenal, devoted their vast wealth to helping those in need. There are millions in abject poverty who could be lifted from their misery with all the money that’s pumped into football by narcissistic billionaires. They shame themselves by wasting money on football clubs.

  149. @m18ctid….thanks for that. Destroys my belief that Kroenke and Usmanov are “genuine Arsenal fans”. Now we know why they are here.

  150. Good post Rupert,

    In fairness I don’t expect opposition fans to fawn all over us, but the concept of rich men investing money in football clubs to help them grow isn’t something new as you allude to in your first paragraph. It’s been happening in football for well over 100 years. I think this is the one sticking point that that grates with City fans the most when other club’s fans have a pop at our spending – the ones having a go tend to conveniently forget that their own clubs have benefitted from investment from rich benefactors in the past.

    Your last point is an interesting one but while I think it’s a valid point I’m not sure any of us should be telling people how they should spend their fortunes. I do get the impression that there are signs that Arsenal might finally be inclined to spend more though. The Ozil transfer plus the bid for Suarez. Speaking of which, I’ve felt on more than one occasion this season that if you’d signed the latter then you may well have won the league.

  151. First thing: I was glad that City won the title over the liars from Liverpool and Moaninho and his Chelsea.

    When the PL started Arsenal was a midtable club most of the time. Finishing 10th- 4th-12th-5th till Wenger came around. I am not pretending we were an elite club at that time. We were not.

    The difference was that we got a manager that turned us in to one. Wenger. If it wouldn’t have been for Wenger we might still have been a midtable club with the occasional title every 10-20 year.

    It was by working with a small budget (Highbury was a small ground) that he brought us to the top.

    We got smashed out of that top by Chelsea money, or better said Russian money. Pumped in a club that was going bankrupt. A bit like City. Now I don’t want clubs to go bankrupt but I also don’t want clubs to be run on money they didn’t earn themselves.

    Even if City breaks even, it still will be build on money you didn’t earned in the first place. And so for me this is something I will never apllaud for.

    I saw someone mention (based on the media articles that have been published in the last weeks I think) that Arsenal broke the transfer record when buying Özil.

    In a way this proves that you don’t need a big rich owner to catapult you to the top. Arsenal has spend £500M OF OUR OWN MONEY to build the Emirates. Money we are paying back to the banks and funded with our own income. Meanwhile the Russian and sheiks stepped in to disturb the market completely. And now after saving up our money and still being in the top 4 we have been able to buy a top class player. AGAIN WITH OUR OWN MONEY THAT WE HAVE EARNED OURSELVES!

    And if you talk about re-development and how the sheik is doing all that. Then I would invite you to the Emirates next time and take a walk around the ground. And have a look at the redevelopment that has been going on for many years. Look at the new flats, affordable houses that have been build and look at the older houses around Highbury then. This redevelopment has been there thanks to Arsenal and us building the Emirates. No sheik did this. No, Arsenal football club was responsible, co-funded it again FROM OUR OWN MONEY!

    Bottom line: City did nothing, the sheik did it all for you. Arsenal did it all BY THEMSELVES! Without any help from rich owners. And that pride is something you will never be able to understand.

    and I have said it many times before when I talked to City fans. You can win 10 titles in a row deep inside you know it aren’t your titles, it are the titles of your owner. As for any trophy that Arsenal wins…it will be really ours.

  152. A good post Walter.

    It is almost predictable that the AAA have more sympathy with City than they have with their own club.

  153. Yes, yes Walter – we hear you loud and clear mate. I see you’ve yet again forgotten the money invested by Norris and Fiszman into your club so no, Arsenal hasn’t grown totally organically despite you desperately trying to convince us otherwise.

    Oh, and instead of furnishing us City fans with your sanctimonious rubbish, perhaps you’d be better off supporting your local team rather than piggy-backing on a club based in a city that you have no connection with. I’m sorry if that sounds harsh but I’m not having an Arsenal fan from Belgium pontificating to me about our club when I can safely say that I’ve put more time, money, and effort into following MCFC than you’ve ever done following Arsenal. Fans have to earn their stripes Walter – can you safely say that you’ve done that?

  154. Rupert

    Morals are individually decided. That is not at debate here unless City fans start saying how unfair the CL is for not giving them a free ride to the top.

    You claim you don’t want billionaires to spend money on football (and yet claim morality is ridiculous) and also claim that others suffer from jealousy..Maybe you do, I certainly don’t. Arsenal have attracted their own billionaires and most on this site have consistently wanted them away. Including Kroenke, who was brought in only when Usmanov surfaced, and certainly brought in with the clear statement that he will not disrupt the Arsenal way. Which he hasn’t. Why is this disappointing? It isn’t to me. Not one bit.

    What is disappointing is that because the media has a vested interest in promoting billionaire owned clubs (more headlines, more money, maybe some spillover) it gets accepted as a ‘good’ thing. It isn’t. Not in the wider context of the world, but specifically, not for football. No intelligent person can honestly think it makes the sport fairer or more competitive.

  155. The Media have been horrible about our club and owner because it suits their bigoted and rival club supporting fans so your last comment is laughable shard. I think City fans are ok with billionaire owners but perhaps some or most want some regulation just not FFP. In any case your in no position to say what City fans want or do not want

  156. And the champions league and other leagues are unfair not saying we want a free pass tho depends what you mean by that

  157. Will

    When did I say what City fans want? And if you are so touchy about anyone invading on your turf, what are you doing on an Arsenal site?

    I guess you missed the glut of articles saying how Uefa punishing City is unfair and uncalled for.

  158. Arsenal are among the clubs that have distorted football over the last 20-25 years, from the change in how attendance money is distributed, to the formation of the PL, up through the various changes to the European Cup/Champions League to the present day with FFP. All have benefited a few (incl. Arsenal) at the expense of others and competition as a whole.
    Without huge investment, to neutralise the effect of all the money that the elite few clubs have managed to direct their way, no club can break into the top 4 Holy Grail and stay there. But that’s not even the biggest issue, in the past smaller clubs could, with good management, win the league outright, even from a promoted position. There was mobility. A team that finished 2nd one year could be fighting relegation the next. Coming 4th wasn’t seen as bigger achievement as winning the FA Cup and we wonder where the magic of the FA Cup has gone.
    I am in favour of some form of FFP, but the current regulations will do far more harm than good. Intentions aren’t enough.

  159. The media changed it tune I have no idea why they have been anti-city pro FFP boarder line racist with the exception of Martin Samual then once our supposed punishment was leaked they changed their tune generally tho they have been vile and anti-city

  160. Was it that obvious Walter? 😉 Anyway, I’ve calmed down now. When all said and done it’s just words on an internet forum and we’re all entitled to our opinions.

  161. Those things happen. No hard feelings.
    In fact I took he challenge to look up a few things about the spending of Arsenal in the nineties and it was interesting reading. Providing the numbers I found are correct.

    Arsenal spend in the nineties but not that much compared to others. I posted the numbers in the other thread.

  162. Yes, I’ve seen it Walter. I’m not deliberately ignoring it – just been embroiled in a healthy debate on the same thread.

  163. @Shard, maybe you misunderstood me. I mean morality is useless in football, I didn’t say I wished it to be that way, it just seems to be the way it is, (and not just in football).

    Morals are individually decided. Not sure what you mean by that. Does that mean it’s ok to go out and murder someone according to your individual morals? Maybe I’ve misunderstood you here.

    I didn’t say you were jealous though did I? I said some people on here appear to be. Only you know whether you are or not.

    May not post much for a while as the laptop is broken and the library computer is damn slow. Jambug, get out and celebrate, I’ve been thwarted by tech gremlins.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *