Manchester City Allegedly Received Inappropriate Payment From “Mystery” Individual

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Manchester City have been accused of receiving an inappropriate £30 million payment from a “mystery” individual from the United Arab Emirates.

The money taken was disguised as sponsorship funding in order to balance the books.

Based on a 2020 UEFA report received by the creators of a YouTube film (whose names were not mentioned), Manchester City received £15 million payment in two batches from a “mystery” Abu Dhabi-based individual in 2012 and 2013.

These funds that were received by Manchester City apparently should have arrived from a club sponsor.

UEFA’s financial control body concluded that these payments, expected to have come from UAE owned telecoms firm Etisalat, were surprisingly “disguised equity funding”.

Manchester City payment from “mystery” individual
Manchester City reportedly get illicit payment from mystery man

Manchester City received inappropriate payment from mystery figure from UAE

It claimed that the money actually came from City’s Abu Dhabi-based owners, which was a contravention of their rules.

The Citizens were found guilty of “serious breaches” of financial fair play regulation by UEFA between 2012 and 2016 and they were given a two-year Champions League ban for their unsporting conduct.

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However, they appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), who overturned the two-year suspension and instead lowered the fine which accompanied it from £30 million to £10 million.

The Court Of Arbitration for Sport said the majority of the claimed breaches “were either not established or time-barred”.

Anyway, in 2022 the Premier League announced it had indicted the Citizens with 115 offenses, claiming that they had wrongly reported their finances over a nine-year spell up to 2018.

According to British daily newspaper, The Times, who have seen the leaked report, the claimed payments are thought to be included in the 115 charges, which City have said they will contest against.

However, UEFA’S rulebook is different from that of the Premier League as with the English top-division none of the alleged wrongdoing will be time-barred.

Manchester City payment from “mystery” individual
What lies ahead for Manchester City?

The report also indicates that in a UEFA disciplinary hearing, City’s legal representative named the individual who made the payments as Jaber Mohammed.

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They indicate that Jaber was “in the business of providing financial and brokering services to commercial entities in the UAE”.

UEFA included in the report that the “obvious question” which no answer was given at any point is the reason the company of City’s owners “should have needed any financial assistance from a broker in paying the Etisalat sponsorship liabilities”.

Manchester City expressed that Etisalat repaid the money to their owners in 2015, a defense that has been rejected by UEFA.

Court of Arbitration for Sports came to Manchester City’s rescue

CAS stated that the Citizens could not be punished for the money paid, because they were time-barred.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport panel also unburdened them of getting similar payments through Etihad.

Etihad Airways are long-term sponsors of Manchester City’s stadium, having entered into a stadium naming agreement with their kit sponsors.

UEFA and the Premier League specified that owners are restricted over the amount of money they can pump into the club.

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However, there are no limits or caveats whatsoever regarding sponsorship payments.

Manchester City payment from “mystery” individual
Manchester City chairman, Khaldoon Mubarak

Based on The Times, the creators of the YouTube film deny they are financed by any Middle East state or other agency.

The whistleblowers have reportedly chosen to keep their identities a secret to the public.

Manchester City reportedly think that there is some political undertone to the revelation, in the midst of previous tensions in the United Arab Emirates.

The Citizens appear to be getting into uncanny waters and one can only wonder what revelation would come next.

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