Premier League title race: Greg Dyke and Uefa rain on Manchester City’s parade

FA chairman believes it's 'pretty depressing' that City could win the title

Manchester City’s likely coronation as Premier League title-winners on Sunday will be shrouded in controversy, with the FA chairman, Greg Dyke, declaring it “pretty depressing” if a side regularly featuring only two Englishmen are champions and Uefa about to impose severe penalties on the club for at least the next two seasons.

Dyke has risked causing another storm just days after his endorsement of the proposal to create a new league for Premier clubs’ B teams by criticising the number of foreigners fielded by City. Manuel Pellegrini’s side need just a point from their final game, at home to West Ham today, to clinch their second title in three years.

“The Premiership has been brilliant,” Dyke said. “But I think there are probably two [regular] England players at City and two or three at Chelsea, although there won’t be that many next year. That’s pretty depressing.”

But the looming Uefa punishment is a bigger calamity for City, who are understood to have failed Uefa’s Financial Fair Play test with an apparent total loss of £200 million (£160m) after the governing body struck out two huge income figures the club believed would reduce those losses and get them over the line.

City now face a difficult choice between accepting the governing body’s finding – effectively admitting they have artificially inflated their own income – or appealing against the decision, which, as The Independent revealed last week, would mean risking a ban from next season’s Champions’ League. Uefa appear satisfied that City’s £350m Etihad sponsorship deal was not an artificial way of Abu Dhabi pumping money into the club. But they have evidently taken a dim view of the £22.45m City claimed as income from the sale of intellectual property to “related parties”, and possibly a further £24.5m the club claimed as earnings from image rights’ sales.

With some or all elements of those income figures removed, City have failed the FFP test by a wide margin. Critically, they cannot therefore use a vital exemption clause, allowing them to subtract £80m in wages for players signed before June 2010. That only applies to clubs which meet FFP rules.

That appears to leave City with a £160m FFP loss - the limit is £37m - and as deeply over budget in FFP terms as Paris Saint-Germain. But the club’s problems are compounded by the fact that the FFP calculations for the 2015-16 season are based around a totting up of the three previous seasons’ financial figures. Even if City break even in the current financial year – as they expect to do – they would still record a possible loss of £163m from the three years which will be taken into consideration for the 2015-16 campaign..

Two Englishmen – Joe Hart and James Milner – have played regularly for City this season. Of the rest, Joleon Lescott last played a Premier League game on 22 March, Micah Richards on 10 November, and Jack Rodwell, signed from Everton in the summer of 2012, has started one League game.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss