Manchester City were banned from the Champions League and Europa League

Manchester City were banned

Manchester City were banned

By Staff Writerécoute moi

Pep Guardiola insisted on Wednesday that he supports Manchester City “100 percent” over their shock two-year ban from European competitions.

City were banned from the Champions League and Europa League for the next two seasons and fined 30 million euros (£24.9 million) on Friday after UEFA found them guilty of committing “serious breaches” of financial regulations.

The Premier League champions overstated sponsorship revenue in accounts submitted between 2012 and 2016, according to European football’s governing body.

Manchester City were banned

The severe punishment will cost City an estimated £170 million in lost Champions League revenue and the club reacted furiously, immediately vowing to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Amid speculation that Guardiola could quit if they lose the appeal, the City manager appeared to give his backing to the club’s beleaguered hierarchy in his first public comments since news of the suspension broke. They also added that the club had “failed to cooperate in the investigation”.

Etihad chiefs immediately vowed to fight the decision and will launch an appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Guardiola is out of contract in 2021 with speculation intensifying that the 49-year-old could leave this summer if the suspension stands.

“The first moment was impact but after a few hours we cannot control, we support the club 100 percent,” Guardiola told Sky Sports ahead of Wednesday’s Premier League game against West Ham.

“Now focus on what we have to do. We just try to play our games. The players are exceptional professionals.

“I don’t know (about the fans’ reaction). Hopefully they can help us from here until the end of the season. We have to play for the people here.”

Manchester City were banned

“It’s not finished. The club believes it’s unfair so we are going to appeal. When someone believes they are right they have to fight,” he said.

“We are going to fight like we have fought every single game. We are optimistic that at the end the truth will prevail and next season we will be in the Champions League.

“All we can do on the pitch is what we have done the last four years and focus on that until the end of the season.

“I trust 100 percent completely my club what they have done. They explained to me the reasons why.”

Manchester City were banned

After scoring City’s second goal against West Ham to cap a man of the match display, Kevin De Bruyne insisted his team-mates will stay focused despite speculation that some of them will ask to leave if the ban is not lifted.

“Obviously we were on holiday when the statement happened and I think we came back and we played football and the situation is what it is,” De Bruyne said.