Manchester City launch scathing attack on chief investigator and vow to fight proposed Champions League ban
Manchester City insisted they were "entirely confident" their looming Champions League ban would be overturned as a Uefa investigation into alleged financial fair play deceptions yesterday formally handed over its findings for sentencing.
The club, who are facing a one-year ban from the Champions League, will have their fate sealed by the Uefa Club Financial Control Body's investigatory chamber (CFCB IC), which is now reviewing the investigation's recommendations.
It is unusual for the adjudicatory chamber to rule against the conclusions of chief investigator Yves Leterme.
However, City launched a scathing attack on Leterme in a statement which said the club were "disappointed, but regrettably not surprised, by the sudden announcement of the referral".
"The leaks to media over the last week are indicative of the process that has been overseen by Mr Leterme," said the club, who are all but certain to appeal the verdict at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
"Manchester City is entirely confident of a positive outcome when the matter is considered by an independent judicial body.
"The accusation of financial irregularities remains entirely false and the CFCB IC referral ignores a comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence provided by Manchester City FC.
"The decision contains mistakes, misinterpretations and confusions fundamentally borne out of a basic lack of due process and there remain significant unresolved matters raised by Manchester City FC as part of what the club has found to be a wholly unsatisfactory, curtailed, and hostile process."
Leterme had been leading the review into evidence surrounding an alleged £60 million payments deception detailed during the Football Leaks scandal last autumn. He said in January that the club face "the heaviest punishment" if the allegations are proven.
Senior Uefa officials - who launched sanctions against City in 2014 - are particularly enraged by leaked files from 2015, which claim almost £60m was paid directly into the club by their billionaire Arab owners but declared as sponsorship. (© Daily Telegraph, London)