- Manchester City will no longer be banned from European play, following a decision Monday.
- Current odds have Manchester United (-800), Chelsea (-300), and Leicester City (+175), all competing for a Top 4 finish.
MANCHESTER, UK – In shocking news Monday morning, Manchester City have been freed from their ban on European play after officials granted their appeal.
The Court of Arbitration of Sport has ruled that Man City did not violate Financial Fair Play rules and only failed to cooperate with UEFA officials, reducing their punishment from a two-year ban from European play to a mere 10 million euro fine.
This decision means that City will qualify for the Champions League this season, knocking the fifth-place finisher into the Europa League.
Odds for which team will finish Top 4 are now extremely volatile, as the pressure has officially been applied to any team who was counting on making it to the Champions League in the fifth spot.
Blues Found Not Guilty
Manchester City was originally accused of violating the Financial Fair Play rules held up by UEFA.
FFP is a complicated set of regulations instituted in 2011 with the intention to protect smaller clubs from overspending and falling into debt. The rules have been extremely controversial since their implementation, with many believing they allow the larger clubs with wealthy owners to monopolize talent and value across all European football.
The rules only permit a club to spend funds equal to or less than the amount the club brings in via revenue.
City’s owner Sheikh Mansour was accused of bolstering the club’s revenue by supplying the team with sponsorship money from his own enterprises.
The decision to grant the appeal and lift the ban was accepted after officials found that no such corruption occurred with the club’s finances.
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) July 13, 2020
In the end, the team was only found guilty of failing to cooperate with officials and earned a 10 Million euro fine.
Madness On The Table
With only a few games left on the schedule, the battle for fourth place will be the story for the remainder of the season.
Soccer bettors will be paying close attention to the table over the next few weeks as the season wraps up.
2020 English Premier League – Top 4 Finish
- Manchester United -800
- Chelsea -300
- Leicester City +175
- Wolverhampton Wanderers +1200
- Sheffield United +25000
Behind league champions Liverpool and the aforementioned Man City, there are only six points that separate third place from seventh in the standings.
Premier League Standings – as of 7/12:
- 3rd Chelsea 60
- 4th Leicester City 59
- 5th Manchester United 58
- 6th Wolverhampton Wanderers 55
- 7th Sheffield United 54
Manchester United currently sit in fifth but have a game in hand over the rest of the field. They face-off against Southampton Monday afternoon, a game in which they are huge favorites to win at -360.
If United can get the win, they will be in third place with 61 points, becoming the betting favorite with each team having only three matches to go.
Jimmy began his journalistic journey as a stat recorder and PA announcer for his middle school baseball team. Full of experience across print, broadcast, and sports radio, he brings his knowledge and toolkit to the LegalSportsBetting team. You can find him watching sports, making parlays, and listening to music on any day ending in Y.