To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Man City sponsors make major decision that could impact Premier League investigation

Man City sponsors make major decision that could impact Premier League investigation

City face 115 charges relating to financial breaches.

Manchester City's main sponsor have taken a decision that could have a major impact on the Premier League's investigation into the club's finances.

In February 2023 City were charged with 115 breaches of the Premier League's financial rules, largely related to the value of sponsorship deals.

Among other things, City stand accused on overstating the value of sponsorship deals, with much of the funds from those deals allegedly coming directly from club owners Abu Dhabi United Group.

A report by German publication Der Spiegel claimed leaked emails suggest the club's main sponsor, Etihad Airways, was only paying £8 million of their official £67.5m obligation to City from the 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2015-16 seasons, with the rest coming from the club's owners.

That would breach both Premier League and UEFA financial rules, and would suggest a fraudulent conspiracy between executives at City and the airline.

City strenuously deny the allegations and said they "welcome the review of this matter by an independent commission," and "look forward to this matter being put to rest once and for all."

Now, Etihad are reportedly in discussion with banks about potentially going public on the stock exchange, a move that could impact the Premier League investigation.

Etihad are reportedly preparing for an Initial Public Offering (IPO), a process of opening up their account for all to see before going on the stock exchange.

Premier League CEO Richard Masters said a date has been set for City's hearing (

Investment banking experts told the The Mirror that it's unlikely Etihad would allow such access if it risked revealing evidence of a manipulated sponsorships deal with City.

That would amount to fraud, something that could seriously damage Etihad's reputation in the eyes of potential investors.

The source told The Mirror: "The accusation is that City executives have colluded with officials from Etihad and have lied not only to the club's independent auditors but to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

"By extension, that also calls into question what information was disclosed by City's owners to Silverlake before the American private equity firm bought a significant stake in the club in 2019.

"That's why the Premier League's allegations go way beyond accusing City of failing to meet Profit and Sustainability Rules."

An independent panel is expected to hear City's case later this year, by which point Etihad might already be on the stock exchange.

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Manchester City, Premier League, FFP, UEFA