Email shows Citizens inflating sponsorship deals

New evidence has emerged that could prove that Manchester City sent millions of pounds to the club to inflate the value of their sponsorship deal as a way to cheat the Financial Fair Play rules.

The Premier League is still investigating the citizens for their alleged crime against FFP, who originally saw them start out of the Champions League during two seasons of UEFA. The decision of the European Football Board was overturned on appeal, but the saga is far from over.

Man City owner accused of bending rules to escape FFP penalties / Laurence Griffiths / Getty Images

And the Daily Mail reports that an email sent by a senior sports sponsorship executive at Etihad Airways back in April 2011 could be proof that the Premier League needs to find Man City guilty.

The email was ordered to a business contact who worked in the “partnership” department at the club and asked them to clarify with the accounting department over a sponsorship fee of £ 12 million for the 2010/11 season.

“Dear [XXX] “there seems to be some confusion about an outstanding balance between the sponsorship fee for the 2010/11 season,” the author wrote.

“As you know, Etihad’s commitment is £ 4 million and the remaining balance (£ 8 million) is handled separately by [UAE] Authority for executive issues. Please, you can clarify this for your account department and pick it up directly with EAA over time. Sincerely.”

And it is understood that Man City invoiced Etihad for £ 12 million to sponsor the shirt, but the invoice also had a handwritten note that Etihad themselves were only required to pay £ 4 million of the fee that year.

Further evidence shows that this sponsorship deal may have been inflated from £ 4 million to £ 12 million, after Etihad paid £ 3.5 million in 2009/10 for the same deal, and £ 4.5 million in the 2011/12 campaign.

When Man City won their appeal at the CAS last summer that their 2-year CL ban would be lifted, like most, I thought it would be the end of their FFP trials.

A short thread.

1 / n

– Nick Harris (@sportingintel) July 24, 2021

It seems that Etihad did not pay the full amount they were billed by Man City, but it was another entity that worked for Sheik Mohammed. And the result is that the club is said to have benefited from inflated sponsorship deals, via money raised from the United Arab Emirates, as a method of getting around FFP rules.

If found guilty, they could discover the current Premier League champions in a whole world of problems.

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