Sports

Jose Mourinho suspected City 'years ago' amid FFP allegations

Jose Mourinho suspected City 'years ago' amid FFP allegations

Last week, German magazine Der Spiegel published a story which claimed the Premier League leaders struck a secret deal with European football's governing body UEFA in 2014 to avoid a potential Champions League ban for breaching FFP regulations.

On Monday, Der Spiegel published a new article on what it alleges are City's attempts to deceive UEFA by channelling millions of pounds of their owner Sheikh Mansour's enormous wealth into the club via their Abu Dhabi-based sponsors.

"If people say it's just about money we accept it, but that point of view is completely wrong", said Guardiola. "We work a lot in a good way". "All I know is that we are not the only club to spend a lot of money, if you want to achieve another level that is what you have to do".

"I think about that issue, the club made a statement last week about what happens about stolen mails", he began, when asked whether the accusations undermine the achievements of a team he steered to 100-point haul last season. Of course we want to follow the rules, from UEFA and Federation Internationale de Football Association and the Premier League.

Since 2008, City have won three Premier Leagues, an FA Cup and three League Cups, and have spent more than £1.4bn on players.

Guardiola distanced himself from allegations of any wrongdoing on City's part, insisting he doesn't get involved in the business side of the club's dealings.

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City say they will not be commenting on the claims and that the attempt to damage their reputation is "organised and clear".

As the leaks continue to emerge, the Spanish top flight, La Liga, have urged UEFA to take action against Manchester City as well as fellow Abu Dhabi owned club PSG, and have warned that they could take it to the European Union courts.

"If it undermines what we have done or not, opinions are free in those terms". Because we need good players. "In the end, focusing on what we have to do on the pitch is all we can do". If we win we are good and accept it, if we lose we accept it's not what we are able to to win.

"But it is an incredible club with incredible people working here. All the ideas that we have, without good players we can not do them", said the Spaniard.

Two players Guardiola has back at his disposal to face Shakhtar are centre-back Nicolas Otamendi (tendon) and midfielder Ilkay Gundogan (hamstring), who sat out the 6-1 weekend win over Southampton.

And from Spain today comes more pressure on UEFA to investigate City's practices in relation to FFP, particularly the claim of artificially inflated sponsorship deals - or "financial doping" - which could be the most serious of the lot.


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