Manchester City, the reigning Premier League champion, has been barred from the Champions League for the next two seasons for “serious breaches” of European soccer’s financial regulations. The club has also been fined 30 million euros ($32.5 million).
Manchester City had sought to short circuit an investigation by financial regulators at UEFA — and preserve its place in the Champions League, European soccer’s richest competition and the trophy the club covets most — by appealing to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. But in November the court rejected the appeal, in which City had tried to end the investigation on procedural grounds, by ruling that it could not hear the case until the club had exhausted the disciplinary process at UEFA.
The club, which has denied all of the accusations against it, is expected to mount a vigorous appeal now that the punishment has been imposed.
[This is a developing story that will be updated.]