UEFA’s investigation into Manchester City concluded that two £15m payments from a broker was funding from the club’s owners disguised as sponsorship revenue.
The report by the adjudicatory committee of UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) is effectively the written reasons behind the decision announced in February 2020 to suspend City from European competition for two years.
The report was never published because the club appealed against the decision and the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) later overturned the CFCB verdict, but it has been obtained by the makers of a YouTube film released on Thursday, and has also been seen by The Times.
UEFA did not comment on the report when contacted by the PA news agency on Friday.
The report said City’s lawyers had told a UEFA disciplinary hearing that two £15m sponsorship payments from telecommunications firm Etisalat in 2012 and 2013 were made by a man called Jaber Mohammed, who was described as a broker, and that Etisalat repaid the money to City’s owners in 2015.
The Times reports that the adjudicatory committee of the CFCB concluded: “Arrangements were made under which payments were made or caused to be made by ADUG (Abu Dhabi United Group, a private equity fund controlled by City owner Sheikh Mansour) but attributed to the sponsorship obligations of Etisalat so as to disguise the true purpose of equity funding, and those arrangements were carried into effect by the payments made by Jaber Mohamed totalling £30million.
“The management of the club was well aware that the payments totalling £30million made by Jaber Mohamed were made as equity funding, not as payments for the sponsor on account of genuine sponsorship liabilities.”