With the Premier League announcing that they have reported Manchester City for alleged breaches of Premier League rules across several seasons, the legitimacy of their title wins during that period comes into question.
On February 6, 2023, it was announced that the English Premier League had found Manchester City guilty of over 100 alleged breaches concerning their financial records between the period of 2009/10 to 2017/18.
A four-year investigation into the club revealed that Manchester City purportedly provided inaccurate financial information to the Premier League while also misleading regulators about its sponsorship revenue and operating costs.
There are also alleged discrepancies in payments made to Manchester City paid manager Roberto Mancini from 2009-13 and various players from 2010-16.
In addition to domestic charges, the club has been accused of supposedly breaking UEFA Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules from 2013-18.
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Manchester City responded to the announcement, denying all allegations and welcoming the review of the matter by an independent commission.
What charges could Manchester City face?
The Premier League has not made clear what, if any, potential punishments the club would face if found guilty but there is a list of presumable punishments based on the Premier League handbook
Several sanctions are possible according to section W.51.4 of the Premier League’s official rules and regulations including the option to “make any order as the commission sees fit”.
The Calciopoli scandal in Italy could be tentatively used as a precedent for their decision as back then, Juventus were stripped of the 2004/05 and 2005/06 Serie A titles. While the 04/05 title was left unassigned, the 05/06 title was assigned to second-place Inter Milan.
During the period under scrutiny, Manchester City won 3 Premier League titles, in 2011/12, 2013/14, and 2017/18. If the club were to be stripped of these titles, they could similarly be left unassigned or handed to the second-place teams for those seasons.
In the case of the 13/14 season, Liverpool would be adjudged champions while Manchester United would be beneficiaries of the 11/12 and 17/18 seasons.
Of course, all of these scenarios are circumstantial and there is no clarity on the kind of punishment, if any, the independent commission will decide to impose. Any decision may take months, if not years to reach a certified conclusion.