UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin is unsure whether the Court of Arbitration for Sport will rule on Manchester City’s case before the start of next season.
City were banned from UEFA club competitions for the next two seasons and fined €30million (£24.9million) after being found to have committed “serious breaches” of financial regulations.
The reigning Premier League champions were said to have overstated sponsorship revenue in accounts submitted between 2012 and 2016 in findings by European football’s governing body.
But City confirmed on February 26 that they had made an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the finding by UEFA’s CFCB adjudicatory chamber.
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But should City’s ban be upheld and they finish inside the Premier League’s top four, then the side sitting in fifth place would qualify for the Champions League.
The teams who finish sixth and seventh would be handed a place in next season’s Europa League.
If a side who has already qualified for Europe through their league position wins the FA Cup at the end of the season (with Sheffield United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Leicester the possible candidates), then the team who finishes eighth in the table would also be handed a place in the Europa League.
The decision is likely to impact Chelsea, Manchester United, Tottenham and Arsenal in their race for European football next season, but UEFA’s top boss has refused to declare whether clubs will know the outcome before the conclusion of the current campaign.
“Hard to say,” Ceferin replied when asked by Sky Sports whether CAS will rule on the case before the start of next season.
“As much as I heard, it’s a big file and I would have to ask our lawyers about the usual time of the decision. It’s really impossible to say.”
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