UEFA Rules Bar Manchester City and Girona from Champions League

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UEFA Rules Bar Manchester City and Girona from Champions League

Manchester City and their sister club Girona will not be able to compete in next season’s Champions League unless the Abu Dhabi owners reduce their shareholding in one team, UEFA has ruled.

The two clubs are owned by the City Football Group, which is controlled by the Abu Dhabi United Group. UEFA rules prohibit clubs with the same owner from competing in the same European competition.

Girona could still compete in the Europa League, but only if Manchester City do not qualify for the Champions League. If both clubs finish second in their domestic leagues, City would take the Champions League spot due to England’s higher UEFA coefficient.

This ruling is a blow to both clubs, but particularly to Girona, who are currently second in the Spanish Segunda Division and on course for promotion to La Liga.

Manchester City and Girona have been sister clubs since 2017, when the City Football Group acquired a majority stake in the Spanish club. Since then, Girona have been used as a feeder club for Manchester City, with a number of players moving between the two clubs.

UEFA’s decision to bar the two clubs from competing in the same European competition is designed to prevent conflicts of interest. UEFA believes that if two clubs with the same owner are allowed to compete in the same competition, it could lead to one club being favored over the other.

Manchester City and Girona have not yet commented on UEFA’s ruling, but it is likely that they will appeal the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

If CAS upholds UEFA’s ruling, it will be a major setback for both clubs. Manchester City will be denied the chance to compete for Europe’s top prize, while Girona will be denied the chance to compete in European competition for the first time in their history.

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