Manchester City have successfully appealed their two-year ban from all European club competitions.
The Premier League club had been accused of inflating the value of their sponsorship deals in order to comply with Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations that restrict the amount of money a team can spend relative to how much they make, eventually requiring clubs to break even within a specific timeframe. As a result, UEFA – European football's governing body – banned the club from taking part in the Champions League for the next two seasons, and fined them €30 million.
Manchester City appealed the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), arguing that the leaked documents that sparked the investigation were deliberately taken out of context and presented in a way that made it seem like the club had something to hide.
In their ruling on Monday, CAS agreed with UEFA that Manchester City "did fail to cooperate with the UEFA authorities", but ultimately "did not disguise any equity funding". The statement then concluded: "As the charges with respect to any dishonest concealment of equity funding were clearly more significant violations than obstructing the CFCB’s investigations, it was not appropriate to impose a ban on participating in UEFA's club competitions for MCFC's failure to cooperate with the CFCB's investigations alone".
In addition, CAS reduced the club's fine to just €10 million.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport are expected to release their full findings later this week.