Manchester City avoid Fifa transfer ban despite breaking rules on signing young players

City still subject to investigations from Uefa, Premier League and FA

Mark Critchley
Northern Football Correspondent
Tuesday 13 August 2019 18:14 BST
Manchester City 2019-20 Premier League season preview

Manchester City have avoided a Fifa transfer ban despite being found to have broken rules regarding the signing of young players.

City have been fined 370,000 Swiss francs (£314,725) by world football’s governing body after admitting to breaching regulations on the international transfer of under-18s.

The Premier League champions faced being hit with a year-long ban on signings, similar to the punishment Chelsea received from Fifa for the same offence earlier this year.

But in a statement released on Tuesday afternoon, Fifa announced City would only receive a financial sanction having “accepted its responsibility” in the case.

City remain under investigation by Uefa, who are looking into their compliance with their Financial Fair Play (FFP) rules. A ban from next season’s Champions League is a possible punishment.

The Premier League are also investigating City’s recruitment of academy players and FFP compliance, while the Football Association is looking into the signing of Jadon Sancho as a 14-year-old from Watford.

But City have now escaped the prospect of a blanket ban on signing players, in what will come as a great relief to manager Pep Guardiola.

In a statement, City said: “The club accepts responsibility for the breaches which arose as a result of misinterpretation of the regulations in question.

“All of the breaches occurred before December 2016 when guidance on the interpretation of the provisions was issued, since which date Manchester City has been fully compliant.

“The club regards highly and shares Fifa’s determination to ensure the protection of minors in football and has cooperated fully with the investigation which has been transparent and evidenced based at all times.”

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