Monday, June 30, 2014
Wenger: Kick ‘em out!

Wenger: Kick ‘em out!

Arsene Wenger says that clubs who break FFP rules should be properly punished with exclusion from the Champions League, rather than fined.

Man City were punished this week by UEFA, fined £50m (the equivalent of a 2p speeding fine for any of us), and had restrictions on their European squad put in place, but the Arsenal manager believes it should be more simple than that.

“I think the punishment is sophisticated,” he said. “I would like a more simple one that makes more sense, although they have studied that for a very long time certainly to be in accordance with the legal side of it.

“You would think that you accept the rules and you’re in the competition or you don’t accept the rules and you’re not in the competition. Then, everybody would understand it.”

And he’s accused the European governing body of over-complicating the whole thing.

“To me, and all of us on the outside, it looks a complicated punishment. Nobody understands, really. Today people are informed. We live in a society where everyone is informed. The rules have to be clear so that you can inform people well.

“But if I go out in the street now and I ask a hundred people what you think of the fair play punishment, how many do you think can explain it to you? I’m in the job and I cannot do it.

“They have to clarify the punishment. We all agree that if we don’t respect the rules you have to be punished. But to explain to people how that works is very difficult.”

Rumours that each club in breach of FFP has to nominate a player to be given a hyper-wedgie by Michel Platini could not be confirmed at this point.

9,299 views

87 comments

  1. Man city is fighting tooth and nail, not because the punishments are harsh, because they want to set precedent and avoid future, more severe punishment.

    As pointed out in the article, 50M -no big deal.
    Even a CL squad reduction to 21 instead of 24 players is a bit of a joke, how many different players did City use in the CL last year? I bet it was less than 20.

    It is interesting that they are doing something, but there needs to be coordination within the leagues as well. Liverpool are exempt because they did not play in Europe, but with this seasons higher league place and next year CL they will probably start to be in the black again. The dark side of FFP is that it prevents teams from making big investments to chase future success and will only serve to secure the position of those teams that already have big incomes.

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    • the only sam is nelson

      maintaining the status quo has been the objective of those at the top since time began and this is no different

      AW is smart to point this out as it’s a subtle way of building pressure on Citeh and PSG, and ensuring that their financial doping isn’t forgotten with a fine (like they and UEFA would like it to be). The obvious response for UEFA to this sort of probing would be to ban AW for around 12 matches because he’s looked at a bottle of water a bit funny, or was seen picking his nose in the presence of a framed photograph of Michel Platini, or some other heinous crime against the football family.

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    • I actually was quite impressed with UEFA’s action this week. The biggest fine ever dished out and trust me that reducing City’s squad size from 25 to 21 will hurt. They used 22 in the CL this year and didn’t get that far. If they get to the latter stages it might become a problem. Also 8 of those 21 have to be home grown which they are shitting themselves about as Rodwell, Lescott, Richards, Boyata all looking to leave to play football, they will struggle to fill that quota. Also, appealing could lead to a worse punishment. The point I’m making is that this week more than anything has filled me with hope that UEFA are taking this seriously.

      Ultimately people want Wenger out are very short sighted. He came, changed the way we’ve played, won us titles and cups, made us build a new training ground and stadium whilst having very little net spend over the last 10 years. Kept us in the champions league for 17 years. People take that for granted but after next year with no Utd in the CL that is a record only us and real madrid hold. We have a turnover that will exceed 300m when the next figures are out due to the PUMA deal and new TV rights. The biggest factor is now we’ve paid off the part of the stadium that needed to be paid in the short term we are now left with a very manageable mortgage effectively of £19m a year until 2031. Now we’ve gotten to that position we’ll be back challenging on the field. The point I’m trying to make we should be proud of our club for being well run when football has gone crazy, we should be proud of our manager and ultimately be very optimistic for the future. The future is bright people….the future is ARSENAL!

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      • EXCELLENT !!

        alas goonies will spend their time moaning about tactics, transfers etc……

        the situation at arsenal the last ten years was so beyond the small time subjects of tactics and transfers ….pity our fans got caught by media and rivals “trolling” and turned against their own club. stupid really…..

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      • Bould's Eyeliner

        The main problem is that instead of looking at FFP as a rule for fair play, UEFA has seen a way to line their coffers with petty fines on some of the world’s richest people.

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      • Couldn’t agree more. Safe hands of Arsene have led to a stronger Arsenal that can continue to grow. Invincibles are on the way back – I can feel it!

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      • Only problem now is the lack of success

        success = more fans, more prize money, better commercial deals, more income

        Man U commercial income is huge because they have had so much success

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        • non flying dutchman

          Arsenal have a pretty impressive global fanbase despite the lack of trophies in the last nine years, though i do think our continued part in the Champions league has helped towards that significantly.

          United are finding that a lot of their fickle fan base can not tolerate even one year of failure, rendering their ecomic situation increasingly precarious.

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    • I suggest a staged protest of a group nose-pick in UEFA HQ.

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    • FFP will stop the big 1-3 year investments but it won’t stop someone trying to build success the right way. Other teams will get into the CL but it’ll take them 5-10 years rather than buying their way in in 1-3years.
      It also means that $ity/Chelski can’t pay the whole squad (of the top players) 1m per week per player so no one else gets a look in.
      Plus if some billionaire can’t buy success then he’s less likely to buy the toy, play with it for a while and then drop it, leaving it a broken mess.
      FFP is a very good idea and for the first couple of years I can understand why it can go for the fines/point/squad-size penalty (I don’t agree with it but understand it) however IMO they must go to an yes/no – in/out of the CL ‘penalty’ in 3 to 5 years when it’s 100% clear what’s covered and what’s not covered by FFP.

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  2. Arsene is literally shaking with fury about this, so much so, he has gone all fuzzy and out of focus.

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  3. You’re damn right, no one likes man shitteh… They’ve taken the quick way to success by using resources which is not their own, I think it’s only right that all of the clubs should compete on the same terms… What Man City does is just disgusting. Same with clubs like PSG, Monaco if you ask me, only that those teams play in a horrible league..

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    • Probably not too popular around here, but I don’t mind them all that much these days. They play good attacking football, don’t dive or generally act like cunts, and Pellegrini is a rather decent fellow…

      … Given the choice between Man Utd’s generally boring, shitty football, Liverpools ‘oh, there was contact so it wasn’t a dive at all, because people generally fly 10 meters and roll around in pain for 10 minutes if somebody touches their shoulder’ and Chelseas with their penchant for hiring generally amazingly unlikeable managers and players and Man City for league title it’s pretty damn clear who is the least objectionable for me.

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      • Don’t dive? That really isn’t true, tell me you believe anyone under 7ft could drop Toure with a scrape of their hand and I’d believe you!

        They dive less than Chelsea/Utd/Liverpool and they do play some nice football but there’s still an element of distaste to the way they approach things i.e. chuck money at every player they can and see who sticks, regardless of any financial risk because it simply isn’t a risk to them. You do have to balance it with the thought that you need to spend a little more to get you up to the CL level, you should leave the door open a crack so as there’s always a chance for a well-run club to get up there and compete, but try to keep it so there’s an element of risk for the super-rich. Not as easy as it looks but lacking balls to make the punishments stick is never going to work.

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      • Bould's Eyeliner

        certainly but except for a certain chinless bastard, you can’t say that they are more hateable than chelsea or man u or liverpool or sp*rs…..

        I for one like Kompany and think it’s a shame he has to wear that shitty blue jersey. I don’t blame the players that have chins. They had an opportunity, I guess.

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    • The Ox is a fox

      Chelsea, Inter.

      Even Real Madrid when they bought Kaka (£60m) and Ronaldo(£85m) using money from an unknown source.
      But, questions were quashed off very quickly.

      Here’s the thing: Arsenal have to ride all challenges. Forget about FFP or anything. Rules always favour the ones more powerful, because they are created by cunts.

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    • For me it’s not only the fact that they’re spending mad money they don’t have to earn, but they are also grossly distorting the actual values of the players making it impossible for a level headed team to draw in a good player or two even on a financial basis. Add that to the purchased position on the table, and it becomes near impossible.

      And now that City are going to be scrambling for new homegrown players their values will likely jump. The unsettled ones who will be leaving have gotten a taste for the fat wages and will remain out of scale unless they are willing to take some serious cuts. Many have been content to sit so far. Never thought I’d say this, but kudos to Barry for looking to play.

      And then there is the practice of City and Chelsea of hoarding players on spec and loaning them out. I won’t get started on that, but I do wonder how many were purchased purely because they caught wind a competitor was looking in on them.

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  4. Do you really see UEFA banning the likes of City, Barcelona or Madrid for over spending? If you take any of the big clubs out of the tournament it would mean that when it comes to a time when UEFA sell the TV rights the whole package would be less attractive and therefore, cheaper and that would be money out of their pockets. Can never see a club being banned by UEFA, especially the elite clubs.

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    • Just ban those c*** from CL and you’ll see em put that fucking red shirt of manchester back on..

      They got the money but no soul, nobody would miss em..

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    • I think you are underestimating the value of the champions league ‘brand’ as such, and overestimating the value of City and especially PSG to that competition. They do not really have any international fans. (City may have a couple, but eight year olds do not pay for TV subscriptions.)

      People will be just as excited to watch the CL without those cheating fuckers. Besides, even if there were an effect on the TV money, the fines could go some way towards paying for that.

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    • Which means the optimal solution would be fining them some money that UEFA doesn’t even know where it would go to.

      When you put FFP in place and still care about your big teams participating, why are you even trying at that point? Just make an FFP with an exception clause for Barcelona and Madrid for X years might as well. This year only ~8 teams breached FFP so it’s not like this has happened now, and I doubt Barca or Madrid with their TV deals will fuck up that much financially.

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    • Banning from CL might also get some of those players thinking about other teams.. if they’re there for more than the pay packet, that is.

      Besides, one year CL taking a hit with a serious ban, and those teams would correct right quick. Yes, some of those teams’ supporters would be put out, but might attract interest from some who are bored with the same teams every year for the obvious reasons.

      Star players are certainly an attraction and all, but Atletico has made La Liga far more interesting this year.

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    • In the last few years RM & Barca have such a big income that there’s no way they can fail FFP.
      They are the biggest 2 football ‘brands’ in the world by a long way.
      Their national TV deals just add to that.

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      • non flying dutchman

        If Real and Barca can survive without those skewered TV deals then I suggest they go ahead and do so. They should be embarresed to be milking off such am inbalence while other clubs in La Liga crumble under financial pressure.

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  5. Super top quality

    I hope it’s Nasri (you know, for the super-wedgie)

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  6. what I see is that its the beginning of something. i dont have high hopes of FFP. still the 8 players homegrown rule coupled with a transfer cap would force the clubs to retain some players they want to eject in hope of getting better players. suspension looks good on paper but wouldnt probably happen unless its a small group whose footprint in europe isnt huge.

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  7. the only sam is nelson

    interesting proposal from the FA about “B” teams – can anybody see clubs like City selling players like Yaya Toure to their “B” team, who can pay him £200K a week without fear of UEFA bans, and then lend him back to Citeh, where his wages will be off the books?

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    • FFP is pretty detailed, with lots of ‘fair market value’ judgements made by the UEFA auditors rather than by the club. So although that’s an interesting idea, it’s extremely unlikely it could work.

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  8. In my opinion making the punishment have anything to do with the payment of a monetary fine makes a bit of a mockery of it. To those who don’t seem to give a shit about how much money they spend, 50M or whatever value, it means nothing, it’s just another reckless spend on top of their already reckless spending.

    “You do realise, if you keep spending like this, you’ll have to pay another 50M?”
    “Pardon? You’re going to have to speak up, I can’t hear you because of all of this money!”

    The fact that UEFA can make money from this as well is complete horse shit.

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    • If the fines went into grass roots football then I have no issue with the fines, but UEFA being UEFA it will go into someones pocket.

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    • UEFA says that if a club continually fails then the penalty gets bigger.
      Maybe money, maybe a points deduction in the group stage or maybe they’ll get kicked out….

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  9. I like the principle that any club can invest in the hope of getting higher up the food chain, and don’t like anything that seems to remove competition and keeps the status quo. Like it or not Citeh/CFC have changed the status quo in england and it’s good to see different team up there. HOWEVER – there is no doubt that the levels of spending in such a short time by Citeh, CFC, PSG, Monaco etc is simply dangerous and is distorting the transfer market and, more importantly, the wages top players can aspire to. Given that wages make up the majority of a club’s spending and is money that leaves football (so there is no trickle-down effect) this is very dangerous. It is forcing wages levels up and up to frankly ridiculous amounts that even sensible clubs have to consider, it is forcing up tkt prices, increasing the gap between the player and the fan. It cannot be sensible for any club to spend more than it can ever hope to recoup over a sustained period. CFC have won everything the game can offer them, they have renegotiated sponsorships off the back of success..and yet 10yrs after RA bought the club (with a 3yr self-sustainability target) the club still make a loss every year. It can’t go on. It is like the housing market that everyone thought could only go up and up…that’s not how markets work. There is a bubble in football that can burst very easily, it only takes a few stakeholders like sponsors or tv companies to pull out and pop!

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    • well to be fair, sponsors leaving the game would only affect clubs that depend on income like us, not the likes of PSG and City

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      • It would reduce the ‘fair value’ price that PSG and $ity could charge their tame sponsors.

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    • Actually, and surprisingly, CFC were in the black last year and passed FFP. Their revenues are impressive and show that continued investment might not be necessary. I hate that City and CFC outspend everyone to get the best players, but that is the same thing United, Liverpool, and Arsenal used to do. While City might overspend by millions, if not billions, in the long run they may end up one of the richest clubs in the world and that investment would have paid off. I don’t really like it, and I think the money in football is absurd, yet then again the top 25 hedge-fund managers in the US made a combined total of 20 billions dollar last year. Welcome to the new economy where there is the super rich, and everyone else.

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      • Manure, the mugsmasher and ourselves predominantly used money the clubs had earned.
        Whereas Chavski and $ity didn’t earn anywhere near the amount they spent.

        Chavski should be OK in the future provided they get rid of some big salaries before they take on some new big salaries.

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    • sorry i cant agree. the landscape can change as long as you work for it. arsenal have worked their arses off and are being denied of their supremacy and dominance because some idiot in government ( tony? gordon?) changed the ownership rules for epl clubs. who the fuck are chelsea and city to cheat us off our titles? you do realise it would have been between us and manure the last ten years and we woudl be owning them even with our 18 yearolds, stadium or no stadium. we do everything as per rules only to see some cheats who are never regulated step in and surpass us.

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    • non flying dutchman

      I don’t buy that at all. I get that you are saying that City and Chelsea were able to break the United – Arsenal monopoly that existed for all but one year in the premier league since its introduction, but all that’s done is create an even more unbreakable monopoly for others

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  10. Dude, wheres my car?

    Maybe a bit off topic but i think UEFA/FIFA are gutless in every sense of the word. I read recently that the fine for throwing a banana at danny alves was £10,000…..Shows where their priorities lie. City should not be in the champions league and teams with fans convicted of racism should be docked points. No ifs or butts.

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  11. Finsbury Park Gooner

    Laughable as this whole situation is, I am also amused/infuriated by the fine. Where will this £50m be going, exactly…?!

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  12. Why do everyone think that the sanctions are not damaging? I think it is quite a warning with the 21 man rule.

    The 21 man rule comes with the 8 home grown rule which already exists. At 25 man, the 8 home grown is no big deal. But with a 21 man team, it is kind of bad for a team like City.

    City have 16 foreigners, including Nastic, but they are now only allowed to put 13 foreigners in it! This means that 3 guys from their foreign legion needs to get the axe. Who will it be? I am thinking Javi Garcia, Pantilmon and probably Demechelis. Their replacements are quite straight forward, IMO. Gareth Barry will be retained in place of Garcia while Pantilmon can be ditched for Kasper Schemeical. Not sure about Demechelis, but it will have to be a home grown CB.

    But that is not where it ends. City can’t buy anymore sexy foreigners. That’s it. No Cavani, Javi Martinez etc. Unless they sell someone.

    They will be forced to raid Southampton actually. Still it is quite a restrictive punishment. If City tries to flout FFP rules even further, and the punishment along these lines gets worse, they will be hurting themselves.

    What do you guys think? Or am I missing something.

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    • WengersNoseHair

      Man $ity can still appeal, which they certainly will. Let’s wait and see what the outcome of that is, and if UEFA really have a pair (and the money to match $ity’s lawyers).

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      • I agree except It can only go to the sport arbitration not the law courts, so UEFA have little to lose.

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    • They’ll just change to grossly distorting the values and wages of homegrown players.

      Keep your eyes open for what happens now with our homegrown players.. It’s a good thing we extended so many contracts recently. Let’s hope those stick.

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  13. The figure eufa lose out on in tv rights for banning a guilty club should be the same figure of the fine implemented. Plus points should be deducted.

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    • Why would UEFA lose anything?
      $ity and PSG are quite small ‘international’ followers perspective.

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  14. I am not surprised by the ‘useless’ punishment imposed by FIFA. After all, FIFA is the money grabbing empire of Platini and Blatter, how can they afford to lose the financial power of those offending clubs? We all know how it works if you have ever played any sort of football manager games, CHEATING by having unlimited money. I absolutely understand Wenger’s frustrations, but at the end of the day, money talks. A smaller but similar situation happened in Formula 1 when races were dominated by one or two teams/manufacturers, richer teams threatened to form a break away series, so there you go! These ultra rich team should just form their own mini league while us mortals watch the Premier League and Champion’s league.

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    • Europe-wise Sity and PSG are not big clubs.
      They add little (if anything) to UEFA pockets.

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    • non flying dutchman

      It would depend who it consisted off but im not sure just how popular such a break away league would be. Formula 1 fans don’t seem to care about the mind numbing predictability of that sport, where as football fans crave those Sunderland v chelsea , palace v Liverpool results.

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  15. Ozil's dodgy hamstring

    UEFA bottled it, plain and simple. They just wanted a way of making a quick buck, without tainting their precious competition. I am surprised that people take them seriously at all. There is no punishment there at all. It’s not hitting those clubs where it hurts.

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    • Agreed, I think the word “fine” should be changed to the word “bribe” and it all comes clear. UEFA just want their piece of sugar-daddy-pie

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  16. Wilshere the glass ancle

    I have to agree Wenger, it almost seemes like a freaking joke to me. They should be excluded, because that fine is of less cost then the Sheikhs car(s).
    And may I compliment on the ending phrase – “Hyper-Wedgie by Platini” that was genious.

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  17. Surely the most appropriate punishment is to force them to play in the Europa League?

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  18. Citys owners are getting away with everything. Their sponsorship comes mainly from companies their family/extended family/friends own, keeping their money in their own circle. But that circle consists of many members of royalty. To me thats ridiculous, how does any other club compete with that kind of money? And we know royalty and politics go hand in hand. It’s reasons like this that makes me think clubs like City will never feel the full force of any punishment or be properly held accountable. .

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  19. Yeah to be honest… £50 million disappearing into UEFA doesn’t seem much evidence of a punishment (assuming that’s where the money would go), while a reduced squad that can contain the best players of a rich pickings club doesn’t seem much of a punishment either. All they need to do is use the champions league squad players less in the league to preserve them.

    I believe the £50 million should be donated to charities, split equally amongst the participating clubs who each choose a charity to donate it too. Great Ormond Street likely being ours.

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    • City would donate to some dodgy charity in the UAE that sponsors the toilet doors at The Etihad for 500m per year.

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  20. Springbank 1965

    I don’t know which is the more pathetic:

    (a) A £10,000 fine for Jose Mourinho.
    (b) A €12,000 fine for Villareal over the Dani Alves incident.
    (c) A £50M fine for Man City.

    None of them are sufficiently severe to act as deterrents; leaving none of the bodies issuing them to be fit for purpose.

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  21. PSG were only fined £20k I think, basically nothing!

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  22. Does anyone know why the journalists changed their tune this week e.g. Ollie Holt, Martin Samuel and the others? They are all supporting man city and are against any punishment for them. Amazing! I thought they all supported ffp before.

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  23. Surely the most appropriate punishment is to have David Moyes manage them next season

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  24. Simplest solution: permanently alternative fuels. Those petrol profits will go fast with the way these club owners spend.

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    • Great idea. Now go and invent a car that runs off ZPE and costs less than a gasoline-powered vehicle.

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  25. UEFA may be giving it a go, but they soon shat themselves when Barca appealed over their transfer ban. It may seem a good thing to limit City’s squad to 21 players, but they only used 21 players anyway. Asking City to pay a fine is like asking an inuit for some snow. Wenger is right, but the media will say he’s moaning as usual.

    Sadly, I can see City appealing any fine or sanction and UEFA shitting their pants and backing down. At that point, we should refuse to send accounts to them. Why the fuck should we waste a penny of our resources on it when nothing is done?

    I hope to be proved wrong.

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    • $ity are not Barca.
      Barca are one of the biggest clubs in the world whilst $ity are hardly known in the world.
      Visit Sth America and mention Manchester and you’ll get everyone talking about when Manure was good. Mention $ity and they’ll think it much be another name for Manure….
      UEFA would love to dump on an EPL club but they’re a bit scared of Barca.

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    • As much as I’d like that to be true, I think most of South America is pretty aware of where Sergio Aguero, Pablo Zabaleta, Pellegrini, and Fernando are.

      At this point City are pretty much on the global radar.

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      • OK an over exaggeration but they are small fry on the world scale.
        A Sth American supporter isn’t interested in buying a $ity shirt (or one of ours).
        They follow the big 2 Spanish clubs unless they have German or Italian heritage in which case they may follow a big team from there. Sity have always had a big following here but it takes more than 10 years ‘national’ success or serious success (CL winners) to gain a big international following. A few other territories are quicker to change but still it wouldn’t make any difference to UEFA if they substituted the toffees for $ity.
        We don’t have the RM/Barca/Manure/Bayern/Milan global following and would be missed only a little more by UEFAs pocket than $ity (which is why we really need to win the CL in the next few years).
        If the Chavs played an entertaining style of football they’d have much bigger international support than us, following their CL final/Win. As it is, it’s a close run thing.

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    • non flying dutchman

      Was that UEFA or the Spanish FA?

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  26. On the other hand, suppose UEFA grows and pair and sticks to its guns. $hitty then appeal to the independent review panel and lose. $hitty then appeal to CAS, who are at liberty to levy a much harsher penalty than the one currently on offer. Let’s say CAS throws them right out of European competition, in addition to all the other penalties. That would certainly send the message that FFP is going to have teeth, and would probably put an end to any future lengthy appeals. But in addition to that …

    That would put us in the third CL qualifying spot instead of the fourth (i.e., straight into the group stages), and Everton would have to go through the final qualifying round instead of us. Nice!

    I don’t think it will happen, but wouldn’t it be great if it did?

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  27. Wenger can carry on dreaming. There is no way that Platini will ever ban overspending teams from the Champions’ League. The tournament is a massive money-maker precisely because of the presence of the giants of Europe. Bans on Real Madrid, Barcelona or even Man City would seriously reduce the market value of the biggest club competition in the world.

    The only way to save football is to introduce a Europe-wide wage cap. Clubs should only be allowed to pay a maximum amount in wages to their players. If you said that a squad’s wage bill could be no more than say 100 million quid then it would immediately stop what City, PSG and Chelsea are doing right now.

    Sadly, this will never happen because of EU employment laws.

    Wenger’s dream that FFP would make Arsenal more competitive on the pitch was always going to be proven to just that – a dream.

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  28. non flying dutchman

    Keown suggested Pellagrini as manager of the season. We love you Martin but give us a break. Come back to me on that when he proves himself able to achieve the league title without breaking the rules that have been put in place, and in so doing hopefully scuppering chance of European glory in the following season.

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  29. Out right ban (most effective) was never going to happen.

    OTOH the reduction in players for the competition albeit a lighter slap on the wrist does have some impact.

    Particularly if the club suffers 2-3 injuries in crucial half of season, they will be down to 15 players to choose from for CL. Assuming at least two of those will be keepers, that leaves 13 out field players.

    It’s still a bit of a blunt instrument but I suppose better than nothing.

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  30. non flying dutchman

    I guess such comment from Arsene would not endear him to the PSG or Monoco owners that the press seem convinced he is going to be working for next year

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