Manchester City could be banned from the Champions League following an investigation into the club’s alleged breaches of Financial Fair Play.
Last year, leaked e-mails and documents obtained by German outlet Der Spiegel alleged that the Premier League champions had flouted Uefa’s FFP regulations.
City categorically deny any wrongdoing but the club’s accounts have been the subject of a probe by a Uefa investigatory chamber which is expected to reach its conclusion either late this week or next week.
And according to the New York Times, the investigation is set to recommend that Pep Guardiola’s side be banned from the Champions League for at least one season as punishment for allegedly breaking FFP rules.
If true, it is not yet clear whether the ban would be effective immediately or begin at the start of the 2020/21 season.
Either way, City officials are said to have warned Uefa that any effort to bar the club from Europe’s premier club competition would be met with an aggressive legal challenge.
The club would also have the right to lodge an appeal with the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
City became the first club in 10 years to retain the Premier League title when they won 4-1 away at Brighton and Hove Albion on Sunday.
As things stand, the Manchester outfit are set to enter the Champions League for the ninth consecutive season but they have so far never made it further than the semi-final stage.
“The accusation of financial irregularities are entirely false,” City said in a statement earlier this year.
“The club’s published accounts are full and complete and a matter of legal and regulatory record.”