May 19, 2020 / 3:27 PM / 18 days ago

Soccer: CAS sets aside three days to hear Manchester City appeal against UEFA ban

LONDON (Reuters) - The Swiss-based Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has set aside three days in June to hear Manchester City’s appeal against a two-year ban from European competition for breaching fair play rules.

Updated listings posted on the CAS website on Tuesday set a June 8-10 date.

European soccer’s governing body UEFA imposed the ban in February for “serious breaches” of the Financial Fair Play (FFP) regulations.

It said City, majority owned by the Abu Dhabi United Group, had overstated sponsorship revenue between 2012 and 2016 and failed to cooperate with UEFA’s investigation. The club were also handed a 30 million euro ($32.81 million) fine.

City, who said at the time that UEFA’s process was flawed and consistently leaked, denied any wrongdoing and appealed to sport’s highest court.

The ruling, if upheld, would mean City would not be able to compete in the 2020-21 Champions League should they again qualify for Europe’s top club competition.

They would also be banned from European competition in the 2021-22 season.

The FFP regulations were introduced in 2011 to stop clubs running up big losses buying players and to ensure sponsorships are genuine commercial deals rather than ways for owners to pump cash into clubs to circumvent the rules.

City are second in the Premier League, 25 points behind Liverpool, with play halted since March 9 due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. The league plans to restart in June.

Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Christian Radnedge

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