The governing body moved a step closer to hitting the Premier League champions with sanctions when an investigation into their finances decided on Thursday there was a case to answer.
UEFA investigated claims the club’s owners pumped £60million directly into the club’s coffers disguised as sponsorship.
But a furious City are ready to take the fight to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland if UEFA’s Adjudicatory Chamber decide they should be kicked out of next season’s showpiece.
And more importantly, they are confident that is a battle they can win.
Reports City broke FFP regulations by inflating the value of a multimillion-pound sponsorship deal surfaced in hacked emails published by online magazine Der Spiegel last November.
After looking into the case the Investigatory Chamber (IC) of UEFA’s Financial Control Board (CFCB) is thought to have expressed the view (in findings to the Ajudicatory Chamber) that a season-long ban would be a suitable punishment.
European football’s governing body said on Thursday it would not make further comment on the matter until a decision is announced by the CFCB adjudicatory chamber who can overturn, fine or ban the Premier League club.
City issued a strongly-worded response to the news on Thursday insisting it was “disappointed but regrettably not surprised” by the announcement.
“The accusation of financial irregularities remains entirely false and the CFCB IC referral ignores a comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence provided by Manchester City FC to the Chamber,” it continued.
“The decision contains mistakes, misinterpretations and confusions fundamentally borne out of a basic lack of due process. There remain significant unresolved matters raised by Manchester City FC as part of what the Club has found to be a wholly unsatisfactory, curtailed, and hostile process.”
City are frustrated that a 100 page document outlining their concerns, passed to the UEFA investigators appears to have been ignored.
And while they have not given up hope the Ajudicatory Chamber could find no fault and overturn the decision they are ready to take their case to CAS in Lausanne.
AC Milan had a Europa League ban for financial irregularities overturned on appeal last year and City said they were confident a ban from competition would not be upheld on appeal.
“Manchester City is entirely confident of a positive outcome when the matter is considered by an independent judicial body,” said the club statement.
Meanwhile, City will be looking to make the last step towards an historic domestic treble this weekend.
Pep Guardiola’s side have won the Carabao Cup and Premier League already this season and will face Watford in Saturday’s FA Cup final at Wembley.