The Club Financial Control Body’s (CFCB) investigatory chamber, headed by former Belgium prime minister Jean-Luc Dehaene, is to meet today and tomorrow to consider the cases of 76 clubs.
Those clubs considered to have committed serious breaches of UEFA’s break-even rules will be referred to the CFCB’s adjudicatory panel for a final verdict, with UEFA to announce details of all sanctions around May 5. The sanctions could include being barred from European competition.
Manchester City, who have lost £149 million in the past two seasons, and PSG are both understood to be among the 76 clubs under investigation.
The CFCB panel will have four options open to them: to dismiss the case; to agree a settlement with the club effectively putting them on probation; to issue a reprimand and fine of up to €100,000; or in serious cases to refer the club to the adjudicatory chamber.
PSG are believed to be most at risk – the Qatari-owned club effectively wiped out its annual losses of €130million by announcing a back-dated sponsorship deal with the Qatar Tourism Authority. As it is a deal with a related party, however, the French club will have to convince UEFA the deal is a fair market value.
Last month it was reported UEFA officials found the Paris club’s officials “a bit haughty” in the discussions over FFP, but that Manchester City had been more convincing.
PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi insisted in January the sponsorship deal was not creative accounting.
He said: “Our contract with Qatar Tourism Authority is not some accounting trick. It’s the same contract we have with Emirates.”
Clubs can lose up to €45millionover the last two years under UEFA’s rules.
City made losses of £97.9million in 2012 and £51.6million last year, but can write off sums spent on facilities, youth development and a number of other items.
Other top English clubs have little to fear, with the likes of Arsenal and Manchester United being in the black in both years. Chelsea made a £49.4million loss last year but made a £1.4million profit in 2012 so will comply.
Liverpool and other clubs such as Monaco, who are not playing in Europe this season, will not have to pass the FFP rules until next autumn, with any sanctions applicable in 2015.
Liverpool last month announced losses of £49.8million up to the end of May 2013, and a further £40.5million over the previous 10 months.