Manchester City deserve a level playing field…don’t they?

The polarization of Manchester City hit new heights and plumbed unchartered depths following the club’s win at the Court of Arbitration for Sport – CAS – and the overturning of the two year Champions League ban imposed by UEFA.

At one end of the spectrum you’ll find words such as ‘totally exonerated’, ‘innocent’ and ‘vindicated’ – at the other, you have ‘got away with it’, ‘technically guilty’ and ‘pyrrhic victory’.

The pernicious press and media outlets have shown little, or no, respect for the CAS adjudication, which cleared City of artificially inflating the value of commercial sponsorship deals with money from club owner, Sheikh Mansour.

The headline judgement read, ‘Manchester City did not disguise equity funding as sponsorship contributions, but did fail to cooperate with the UEFA authorities.’ The court handed down its decision, which read, ‘Exclusion from participation in UEFA club competitions lifted; fine maintained but reduced to €10 million.’

UEFA had sought to ban City in seasons 2020-21 and 2021-22, plus hit them with a huge €30 million penalty, for contravening the paradoxically entitled, Financial Fair Play Rules (FFP). They failed abysmally.

The lesser fine is quite laughable in the context of UEFA conducting a highly loaded investigation with what appears to be a pre-ordained verdict of guilt, before proceedings had even begun.

The only element that went against City – in the eyes of the three man CAS panel – was one of non-cooperation with the investigators from UEFA’s Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) Investigatory Chamber. In this instance City were found to be in breach of UEFA’s Article 56.

The CAS judgement did indeed exonerate City. It was definitive. Prior to the case, nobody, but nobody, was casting aspersions on the standing, the integrity or the impartiality of CAS as a legal entity. That soon changed as UEFA were right royally blown out of the water.

The City haters in the media, the cabal of Manchester United, Liverpool, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Arsenal and so many others with a vested interest in seeking to destroy City, have been unable to conceal their hatred and breathtaking hypocrisy in the wake of yesterday’s watershed verdict.

The usual suspects have been quick to show their colours. Jose Mourinho said: “If you’re not guilty you shouldn’t have a fine. I don’t know if Manchester City are guilty or not but either way it’s a disgraceful decision.”

 Jurgen Klopp added his wisdom saying: “I don’t think it was a good day for football yesterday.”

Javier Tebas, the thoroughly repugnant La Liga President attacked CAS: “We have to reassess whether CAS is the appropriate body to which appeal institutional decisions in football.

“Switzerland is a country with a great history of arbitration, CAS is not up to standard.”

It’s funny how Tebas never had any problems with CAS when they were making judgements which helped Real Madrid and Barcelona – the darlings of La Liga – in previous hearings.

Quite naturally, City boss, Pep Guardiola is ecstatic that the assurances given to him by Sheikh Mansour, Khaldoon Al Mubarak, Ferran Soriano and Co, have come to fruition.

“I am incredibly happy for the decision, which shows what all the people said about the club was not true. We will defend on the pitch what we won on the pitch.” Contrary to the seething emanating from land of the red Scousers, Pep said: “Yesterday was a good day for football.”

The battle lines between City, their Premier League rivals – lest we forget the so called ‘Hateful Eight’ of Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Spurs, Leicester City, Wolves and Burnley – yes, Burnley – who petitioned CAS to have City’s ban upheld, along with UEFA, are clear to see.

If this is the end of this particular sorry saga in UEFA’s seemingly relentless witch-hunt of City, we would do well to retrace its origins and pose questions that the anti-City media may well choose to avoid asking.

UEFA initiated its investigation after allegations appeared in Der Spiegel – a German weekly news magazine – in November 2018, based on City emails, stolen by notorious ‘Football Leaks’, computer hacker, Rui Pinto.

The key allegation within the leaks was that Sheikh Mansour was the source of a large portion of funds from City’s main sponsor, Etihad Airways.

Khaldoon was both adamant and confident City would win at CAS.

In December 2018 Yves Leterme, a former Belgian Prime Minister, and the Head of CFCB (Investigative Chamber) referring to the leaks said: “If what has been written about Manchester City is true, there might be a serious problem. This can lead to the heaviest punishment – exclusion from UEFA competitions. If the information is correct, this goes against the truthful reporting of financial affairs.”

UEFA began a formal investigation into the allegations in March 2019, through Leterme’s Investigative Chamber. Eleven months later, on February 15th 2020, City were handed the two season ban by UEFA’s Adjudicatory Body. City immediately appealed the decision with CAS.

Trace events back to the insidious drip feed of Der Spiegel’s articles, and City have been under a malicious media glare for the past 21 months leading up to yesterday’s verdict.

The three-member CAS panel held it’s hearings from June 8th-10th, before taking just 33 days to analyze the evidence, corroborate them with the testimonies during the hearing, and come back with a finding, stating that “most of the alleged breaches reported by the Adjudicatory Chamber of the CFCB were either not established or time-barred”.

Jose Mourinho condemned the CAS judgement as a ‘disgraceful decision’.

The media reaction since 9.30am yesterday has – with the odd exception, most notably Martin Samuel of the Daily Mail – been sadly predictable. It’s been that of spoilt brats – a pack of cowardly bullies who didn’t get what they wanted – either for themselves, or UEFA’s cabal.

At this stage there are many questions which remain unanswered. Equally there are many questions that the press corps probably won’t ask, because they fear the answers won’t fit their anti-city narrative. Here are some contenders:

  • CFCB Incompetence or Politics? The speed of CAS’s decision and the outright rejection of the ban, while welcome, is also surprising considering that CFCB’s investigation had gone through the whole CFCB process, including both the Investigative and Adjudicatory Chambers of the CFCB. CAS took just a 3-day hearing and 33 days of deliberation, to find no evidence to support the allegations or that some of the alleged breaches were time-barred. So did UEFA actually have a real case against Manchester City? Was it a matter of gross incompetency in the CFCB process or worse, was it an investigation motivated by internal UEFA politics?
  • Did the Chief Investigator for CFCB Yves Leterme lead this investigation with a pre-existing bias?  If so, what is the nature of the bias? This is pertinent from the standpoint of his December 2018 statements, in which City subsequently claimed he “publicly previewed the outcome and sanction he intended to be delivered, before any investigation had even begun”. This contrasted sharply with his treatment of PSG in 2018, an incident which the New York Times claimed, UEFA surrendered without a fight. (Nasser al-Khelaifi, President of PSG has since become a member of UEFA’s Executive Board).
  • Protocol & Audit: Did UEFA follow its investigative and adjudicatory protocol appropriately? Shouldn’t there be an independent audit of the same?
  • Media ‘Perp’ Walk: The previous question is significant because there have been two major leaks to the media from the investigative process. The first on May 13th, 2019 (UEFA Investigators Set to Seek Manchester City’s Ban from the Champions League) and, the second on the following day, (Man City facing 1-season ban from Champions League). These leaks seem to have been aimed at swaying public opinion against City while the legal process was on-going. CAS in an earlier verdict in November 2019, said such leaks were ‘worrisome’. Who in the CFCB or UEFA was responsible for these leaks? Was this CFCB’s version of a ‘Perp Walk’ – an instance of someone in police custody being led into a courthouse in full public glare – implying guilt in the absence of any evidence?
  • Neutrality of the Regulator: Can CFCB be a truly neutral regulator? Shouldn’t CFCB be completely independent of UEFA and its Executive Board? How can it provide oversight on European Clubs when the Executive Board, which comprises members from some of the cabal, has the powers to elect/re-elect members of the CFCB, possibly fix remuneration and be responsible for the supervision of UEFA’s statutes and regulations?
  • Cartel Clubs: How can UEFA attract new investors with Financial Fair Play rules that are so heavily skewed towards the large established clubs in Europe? Aren’t the FFP rules protectionist by nature? How can the game as a whole benefit from these slanted rules? How can UEFA be left in the hands of the favoured few – those with vested interests in FFP?
  • Accountability in CFCB: The case in front of CAS was about two extreme positions with little or no middle ground. It was clear that one party would be found to be in the right and the other vanquished. If City had lost the appeal, there would’ve been a clamour for senior executives to be sacked. As it was, UEFA lost. By the same token how can the CFCB continue under its current leadership?
  • Article 56 Breach: With regards to the breaking of the rules as contained in Article 56 of UEFA’s regulations, isn’t it a result of City having completely lost faith in the CFCB process after the leaks and the apparent belligerence of the Chief Investigator?
  • Media Coverage: Has the football media been fair in its portrayal of City? Pep Guardiola has already stated City’s reputation and standing has been damaged in the 21 months, before the club had its ‘day in court’ – not UEFA’s kangaroo version – but one of integrity such as CAS. The bias against City is plain to see, but why? City have invested well and executed a strong long term plan to near perfection? If money was the only criteria for success, Manchester United would have consistently been a top 3 club since the exit of Sir Alex Ferguson, which we all know hasn’t been the case.
  • Vindication: Finally, doesn’t City stand vindicated? The club maintained their innocence throughout this vengeful pursuit by UEFA. This has proved to be true. Hasn’t City’s behaviour (notwithstanding the breach of UEFA’s Article 56) been exemplary, with no media leaks or PR spins? Haven’t City only been seeking a level playing field – one denied to them from UEFA or the media for a very long time.

In conclusion, City’s performance both on and off the field over the past decade, is not down to money and money alone.

It owes much to the unparalleled efforts of the leadership of the club, the management, staff and players – their collective vision and turning that vision into a glorious reality. Shrewd business acumen – unlike any other in English football – has successfully attracted major investors, such as Silver Lake – the US multinational private equity firm, along with China’s CITIC Group.

Sheikh Mansour’s investment and the self sustaining nature of City’s affairs, have transformed vast tracts of East Manchester, providing the once barren area with a sustainable uplift. Everything has been achieved against a relentless onslaught of skewed regulations and a bombardment of baseless allegations of all kinds.

Isn’t it time for the harassment to end and City afforded a level playing field?

By Hugh Lewis Dewey & David Walker

www.readbutneverred.com @ReadButNeverRed @djwskyblu

52 Comments

  1. July 14, 2020  10:56 pm by Malc Reply

    Excellent article. I couldn't believe some of the comments I've read from so-called serious journalists. You'd think that the ruling by CAS called for the dissolution of the Premier League! I would, however, make a clear distinction between the conceited mid-table team Arsenal FC and their manager - Mikel Arteta who said this today:

    "There is no question about what happened," Arteta told a pre-match news conference.

    "They completely deserve to be in [the] Champions League because what they've done on the pitch is unquestionable and the regulators have looked at it and have decided that they haven't done anything wrong.

    "So you have the two aspects that are really clear and transparent and they're going to be in Champions League, because they deserve [it] for what they do on the pitch and what they do outside the pitch."

    • July 15, 2020  8:55 am by David Walker Reply

      Good old Mikel, he obviously ignored the memo from Kroenke to toe the party line. Thank God Martin Samuel is effectively treading on his cockroach colleagues, both in the so called 'quality' papers and the red tops. Thanks for the feedback.

  2. July 14, 2020  11:14 pm by Kim Dolmor Reply

    Just a load of sour lemon bastards. Who think it would be easier for them if the mighty blues was banned. Sorry but not sorry you morons there was a blue light at the end of the tunnel so just live with it. We are not guilty

    • July 15, 2020  8:57 am by David Walker Reply

      If CAS had ruled against us there would have been no questioning the validity of the decision. The bully boys didn't get their way and the toys came flying out of the pram. It could well be City on the front foot in any future courtroom proceedings.

  3. July 14, 2020  11:15 pm by Sean McDougall Reply

    Absolutely spot on David. the reporting on and treatment of our beloved club has been absolutely appalling from the moment Sheik Mansour took over. Since yesterday I am raging but not surprised that everything I've read (Martin Samuels aside) has been along the lines of 'City have got away with it' rather than 'City are innocent as they always maintained' - it is now time for City to stand up for itself even further and kick back at every opportunity on anything libellous coming from other clubs/journalists etc - we are innocent, have been proven innocent and yet it still seems OK to slander and insinuate about us without retaliation. Peps team talks against Madrid and the 'hateful 8' should be an absolute doddle but lets see the Club hierarchy forcefully calling out liars as and when they occur going forward.

    • July 15, 2020  8:58 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks Sean. Let's hope some Khaldoon karma is on its way!

  4. July 14, 2020  11:20 pm by Fred Nelson Reply

    Love this article, David.
    The vitriolic bile spewing from supporters of the hateful eight has been both predictable and laughable in equal measure. Very disappointing but also hugely entertaining to witness the reaction of the spoiled brats in Mourinho and Klopp among others. As for the La Liga hierarchy..up yours matey!
    A really well researched and articulated piece of journalism, congratulations to you both.

    • July 15, 2020  10:27 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks Fred. It'll never change because City's rivals, and their mouthpieces in the media, have so much to lose if City reign supreme.

  5. July 14, 2020  11:30 pm by Kevin Reply

    Brilliant read ,as there has been a very brazen and blatant attempt to drag us through though the mud, the question is do we take this further knowing this could happen to us again ? Time to level up I think

    • July 15, 2020  10:41 am by David Walker Reply

      You'd like to think City will get on the front foot and start balancing the books. We've been exonerated by CAS, now let's see what our detractors have been up to in the corrupt corridors of power.

  6. July 14, 2020  11:58 pm by Will Reply

    I was getting more and more angry as I read. UEFA & the oligopoly of clubs are quite disgraceful in their blatant witch hunt. Talk about people in glass houses - tax evaders, referee bribers, debt mongers et al. We were always guilty til proven innocent. Imagine if we had lost - it would’ve been absolutely unbearable. Brilliant article.

    • July 15, 2020  10:43 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks for your generous feedback. In compiling our comprehensive defence against UEFA's charges, you'd have thought City's legal team will have uncovered some shady dealings of UEFA and the cabal. Time to go to work...

  7. July 15, 2020  1:30 am by Susan Bookbinder Reply

    As always David your thinking is clear and your writing is inspiring

    • July 15, 2020  10:45 am by David Walker Reply

      Thank you so very much. It was a collaborative effort with Hugh - RBNR's new question master!

  8. July 15, 2020  5:08 am by Sue Scott Reply

    As per usual, accurate measures and on point. It's a pity the so called British media do not perform to the same criteria. Unfortunately their response has been wholly predictable. Martin Samuels stands out as he has throughout the whole tawdry affair. If the whole investigation wasn't dubious why was the head of UEFA only told of the outcome and punishment 30minutes before the world's press? Ceferin, as a lawyer, has recognised that the train wreck that is FFP is wrong and has already declared his intention to overhaul it. It will be interesting to see how the Cartel respond.

    • July 15, 2020  10:47 am by David Walker Reply

      Ceferin never wanted to face City in court but his hand was forced by the cabal who wanted City's blood. The only red stuff on show today is streaming from UEFA's bloodied and snotty snout. Thanks Sue.

  9. July 15, 2020  5:56 am by Allan Scanlon Reply

    It didn't take Fenway 2 minutes to start stinking the place out David. Surely their cheating in US sport should have raised red flags with the PL's fit and proper person't test. Immediately upon arrival they set about trying to sully City's name with the NYT switching their shareholding from FSG to LFC and the appointment of 2 LFC fanzine authors as their chief football writers, whose work is then dressed up as lamb in self-appointed NYT respectability to mask the fact. It's also interesting that the former Director General of the BBC - Mark Thompson - was appointed CEO of the NYT around the same time. I'm still flabbergasted that for a large part of the period that the dirt was flying, when we were able to read about the minutiae of e-mails sent a decade ago, our wonderful free press, the envy of the world, never once volunteered that Rick Parry had managed to get himself onto a CFCB IC team you could count on the fingers of your hands. With the NYT one of the founders of New York based Associated Press, do you really believe those impartial, objective "insider sources" that the BBC go to are anything other than LFC briefings?

    • July 15, 2020  10:53 am by David Walker Reply

      It's the Merseyside Mafia for sure, but the cabal is the cabal and we are now in a position to wreak havoc both on and off the field. They've picked on the wrong club.

  10. July 15, 2020  6:54 am by Doug Sharp Reply

    As always David well researched and argued. Far better than the rubbish being pushed out by the press and Sky. I think Pep is more angry than I have ever seen him - it is good to see him let off steam like this. I think the Club will respond with dignity and humility and let the performance on the field do the talking.

    • July 15, 2020  10:48 am by David Walker Reply

      Thanks Doug. One of the good things to come out of this is the siege mentality within the club and the fire raging in Pep's belly. Hopefully it'll lead to a contract extension as City re-assert their supremacy.

  11. July 15, 2020  7:22 am by Peter Green Reply

    As ever, you are spot on! Sadly the hatred will probably worsen to us now. We have behaved impeccably whilst the hyenas and vultures were gathering. Now they have had their fun ruined, they have nothing else to do except blame the CAS, who they previously thought were impartial. Suddenly, they have either been “bought” by Man City, or are not fit for purpose.
    I can only hope that after Pep’s speech yesterday, his love and passion means he will stay longer and keep building our dynasty.

    • July 15, 2020  10:50 am by David Walker Reply

      My thoughts precisely. Pep for what, another 3 years, 5 years? UEFA and the cabal fear us more than ever because we will keep on getting stronger and stronger. Thank you.

      • July 15, 2020  1:32 pm by Rick Towers Reply

        City must never let the obnoxious back stabbers any sort of welcome at the Etihad draw up a black list and totally put it into use

        • July 15, 2020  2:30 pm by David Walker Reply

          I couldn't agree more but, as has been shown on many occasions before, City's owners continue to be 'civilized' to those who would gleefully do us damage. As supporters we are the polar opposite - do unto others as you would have them do unto you!

          • July 16, 2020  3:58 pm by Steven Darren Sedgwick

            Well said. Hopefully Sheikh Mansour can do as he said /was reported and put £30mil in an account to pay for City suing UEFA every year for the next 10 years. That'll put an end to UEFA's witch-hunt against us.

          • July 16, 2020  7:38 pm by David Walker

            You get the impression UEFA won't be in a hurry to get back in the ring with us anytime soon. They didn't want this court case in the first place. They knew they didn't have a case, but they pursued it, trying to damage City's reputation over a 21 month period, dripping poison into a malicious media, all too eager to lap it up. Thanks for your comment.

  12. July 15, 2020  8:52 am by Mark igoe Reply

    Great read again David. I would think all City fans look forward to reading what you have to say on City related matters

    You & Martin Samuel, seem to be the only sane & reasonable scribes out here at the moment.
    Keep up the good work my friend.

    • July 15, 2020  11:00 am by David Walker Reply

      You can't mention me in the same post as Martin Samuel! The man's THE BEST sports journalist in the country. He has it all; class, integrity, talent, insight and balls. He doesn't kowtow to the majority who peddle their disgusting ant-City rhetoric. He tells it as it is and if, as and when he is critical of City, it'll doubtless be with good reason. Thank you for your kind comments.

  13. July 15, 2020  9:15 am by Pete lynch Reply

    One of your best. Thank you David. I feel like a Spartan after reading that!

    • July 15, 2020  10:54 am by David Walker Reply

      But where can you find a Spartan this time of the day? :-) It was a team effort with Hugh on this occasion. Many thanks.

  14. July 15, 2020  10:11 am by Mike Dickson Reply

    Great article... one interesting point is the role of Yves Leterme. Criticised by the NYT for his lenient view on the PSG issue which resulted in no punishment. This is a link to an article when he was in his previous position as PM of Belgium welcoming Qatar Airways to Brussels. His credibility and bias needs to be questioned. https://www.aviationbusinessme.com/aviation/2011/feb/1/61953

    • July 15, 2020  10:56 am by David Walker Reply

      He doesn't have any credibility. He's toast, or at the very least a Belgian Bun. Thanks Mike.

  15. July 15, 2020  11:06 am by David clare Reply

    Once again a well thought out article without the usual bias of the usual suspects, well done and keep up the good work.

  16. July 15, 2020  11:43 am by James hamblin Reply

    Hi David,
    Didn’t Newcastle also sign the letter, and haven’t Wolves subsequently distanced themselves from the witch hunt?
    One other question that keeps being raised.
    Why would FFP be finished because a club was found to have followed the rules?
    The obvious inference being the judgement is flawed.
    Maybe CAS need to start issuing writs?

    • July 15, 2020  12:33 pm by David Walker Reply

      Yes, I read Martin Samuel's latest piece about Wolves withdrawal and Newcastle joining the pack. Bearing in mind the Geordies are on the brink of a Saudi takeover one can only wonder at their thought processes! You make a very good point about the question marks hanging over FFP, simply because a club followed the rules. Food for thought. Thanks James.

  17. July 15, 2020  11:57 am by Kev Morris Reply

    Was good to see mr Neville calling out UEFA for what he sees as a bunch of incompetent fools.

    • July 15, 2020  12:36 pm by David Walker Reply

      Indeed. He's never actually been on City's side of the argument, but he has a wider agenda of believing that FFP is not fit for purpose - and rightly so. He also has a vested interest in seeing FFP abolished or materially altered in his position as co-ownder of Salford City.

  18. July 15, 2020  12:12 pm by Allan Reply

    Great article as usual. a lot of things going through my head. Allegations have been made but will they name the alligators, I know it's an old joke.
    FFP is a misnomer. It is not fair or a useful financial measure. Companies can make profit but go bust because of lack of cash. When are City going to be short of cash? All these people ridiculing the decision, are they not in contempt of court?
    UEFA headed by, among others, a representative of Liverpool and the rags found us guilty. heir independent review headed by and Arsenal supporter found us guilty. A truly independent court of law found UEFA's punishment too severe in the extreme and found us relatively innocent. interesting?
    I will copy something I posted elsewhere, hope you don't mind.
    My rich uncle said he would always look after me. I went in to town to buy a coat. Everybody in town knew my uncle was going to pay for it so all the prices went up. saw a coat I really liked and the price was inflated even more, but I needed a coat and I bought it. when the shops were replenishing their stocks they found prices had all gone up. They blamed me on the inflation and said the only money I could spend in town now was from my wages. Through my uncle I am rich with money to spend the shopkeepers want my money but they are so jealous they don't want me going around town looking as affluent as them. They have now decided to fine me if I spend too much and have even broken into my house to find my payslips. It appears they can legally break into my house.

    • July 15, 2020  12:43 pm by David Walker Reply

      I have a few excellent coats - hardly worn. Pop round and I'm sure we can do a deal ;-)

  19. July 15, 2020  12:14 pm by Allan Reply

    Oh and I have always had time for Martin Samuel. even when he has said bad things about City he has at least been measured and what he has said has been true. let's face we have made mistakes, nobody's perfect.

    • July 15, 2020  12:39 pm by David Walker Reply

      Absolutely. The beauty of Martin Samuel's work is that he calls it straight no matter who is involved. It's called having journalistic integrity.

  20. July 15, 2020  12:23 pm by Pete Bacon Reply

    Thank you to yourself and to Hugh for an extremely well researched and articulate piece. The true colours of these journalists and the Hateful Eight and beyond is being laid to bare for all to see.The treatment of Manchester City both before, during and after the UEFA investigation and the CAS decision has been, with a couple of notable exceptions, appalling. Sadly, there will be no apologies forthcoming from these quarters because they have zero scruples and even less morals. If everyone could have accepted the final decision gracefully and with humility then we could probably have moved on together. Unfortunately, I think City will still have battles to face in the future from these jealous and self-centred pariahs, but I am more than happy that with the leadership we have in place, we are extremely well equipped to rebuff whatever comes our way,

    • July 15, 2020  12:40 pm by David Walker Reply

      Couldn't agree more on every point. Thanks for reading and commenting - excellent stuff Pete.

      • July 15, 2020  12:59 pm by Steve Barker Reply

        As always the truth is black and white unfortunately the media twist it it many ways this is yet again being used as a campaign against Man City and driving opinions with misplaced and misquoted facts.
        The statement from CAS was clear yet still it is being twisted we shall rest happy knowing that our club was Vindicated of any FFP rules and fine only reduced rather than canceled due to our non compliance to their corrupted pre determined campaign using hacked emails without an understanding of either the content or validity
        Great article David let the haters hate we shall go to battle on the pitch.

        • July 15, 2020  1:30 pm by David Walker Reply

          CAS would only be right in the eyes of the haters if the ban had been upheld. You can't deal logically with illogical people, fuelled by hate and jealousy. Thanks for your comment.

  21. July 15, 2020  1:34 pm by Doug Henshaw Reply

    Hi Dave, excellent article yet again my friend. The hate that was there while we were going through this was unbelievable, but it has been ramped another few notches since we we were found not guilty. I would love City to ban some of of the shit house journalist that have it in for us. As for Mourino and Klopp one was done for tax evasion in Spain while the other one's club was guilty of hacking, do two faced. Just came across someone who had been given me a load of grief and asked him what he had to say. He replied money talks when I said no 3 independent judges found us not guilty he muttered and walked away. People like him and the media really hate that City won.

    • July 15, 2020  2:35 pm by David Walker Reply

      It's no surprise that those who fear and despise City have reacted in this fashion. It doesn't make it any the less unpalatable, but we are dealing with some genuinely nasty pieces of work who will go to almost any lengths to prevent fair competition. This case has made us stronger on so many levels; financially, spiritually, competitively. Those b@st@rds are going to regret their relentless attacks on our club and its reputation.

  22. July 16, 2020  10:33 am by Tony Unwin Reply

    I think these b******s have underestimated by miles, the opponent they chose. The club must have been squirming to respond to some of the bile they've been forced to endure. I truly hope that we now begin to pay back some of it and that ALL the protagonists receive their dues and more. The club should also become selective regarding who they allow inside on match days....the ones who receive 5 star hospitality whilst compiling venomous diatribes to aim back at their generous hosts, should be told to go elsewhere....or maybe named and shamed for all to see!!!

  23. July 29, 2020  4:51 pm by Maureen Tucker Reply

    Thanks David, again another insightful post, some of the legal stuff goes over my head but you put it in a way even l can understand.
    I do think all this has put a slur on our club and caused us some damage, if these idiots that keep on badmouthing our club it could cause more damage, in sponsorships, players wanting to come to us. I really hope our top top guys are watching and compiling all the slander they are spouting and put a stop to them once and for all.

    • August 1, 2020  6:28 pm by David Walker Reply

      It would be nice if City went on the offensive and slapped down Der Spiegel, Carragher and a multitude of other so called pundits and journalists. Sue the backsides off them, bankrupt them and then donate all of the damages to worthy causes.

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