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Man City face ‘expulsion’ like Juventus, Marseille and five other big clubs over their 115 FFP charges

Man City face ‘expulsion’ like Juventus, Marseille and five other big clubs over their 115 FFP charges

Manchester City have 115 FFP charges hanging over them and frankly we’re getting tired of waiting for something to be done.

There are plenty of people salivating over the prospect of their Premier League ‘expulsion’, and we’ve divvied up their players in case of that eventuality. Erling Haaland will do great things at Everton.

And now we’re taking a look at some examples of other big teams being relegated for a variety of reasons, including financial misdeeds a la City (allegedly), but also some good old fashioned match-fixing and one case of a club being sued by its nation’s army…

Juventus won the Scudetto in 2005/06, only to be stripped of that title (and the one before) and demoted to the Italian second tier having been found guilty of pressuring referees to favour the Old Lady.

Club executives were banned for their role in the Calciopoli scandal, which was uncovered in May 2006, when a number of telephone tappings showed relations between club chiefs and referee organizations during the 2004/05 and 2005/06 seasons.

Gianluigi Buffon and Alessandro Del Piero were among the star players who remained with the club despite relegation, and clearly weren’t too adversely affected by their club’s wrongdoing given they won the World Cup with Italy that summer, before helping Juve to return to Serie A at the first time of asking despite a starting the season with a nine-point deduction.

“We are not in Serie B, that is official,” said a spokesman for Fiorentina in the summer of 2002. “At the moment the council is looking at hypotheses about us playing in Serie C.”

Having been relegated from Serie A the club failed to prove to the Italian Football Federation that they had enough money to survive the 2002/03 season and were refused entry to Serie B. They eventually pitched up in Serie C2 as ‘Fiorentina Viola’ – or Fiorentina Purple – after the club as we knew it ceased to exist after they declared bankruptcy.

Manchester Sky Blues has a lovely early noughties Pro Evolution Soccer vibe to it.

A restructuring of the Italian football pyramid allowed them to climb straight to Serie B after just one season, skipping Serie C1. The club then bought back the rights to its name, becoming plain old Fiorentina once more, and were promoted back to Serie A in 2004 after beating Perugia in the play-offs.

Angelo Di Livio stuck with them throughout, which is the equivalent of Kevin De Bruyne rocking up for Manchester City in League Two. If Pep ain’t gonna do it, his players definitely won’t.

Angelo Di Livio Fiorentina.

Angelo Di Livio stuck with Fiorentina in the fourth tier of Italian football.

Another name change and another demotion to the Italian fourth tier, by this point known as Serie D, for a club refounded as Parma Calcio 1913.

Parma had finished sixth in Serie A in the 2013/14 season, but the club was denied entry into European competition and docked points the season after due to the late payment of income tax on salaries.

There were two controversial takeovers during the season; its last chairman Giampietro Manenti was arrested on 18 March 2015 under accusation of money laundering, before the club was declared insolvent by the local court the very next day.

They were forced to put some of their trophies up for sale in a desperate attempt to raise money to cover the debt, including three Coppa Italia titles, a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup, a UEFA Super Cup, two UEFA Cups and a Supercoppa Italiana.

Manchester City’s nine Premier League titles would fetch a bob or two, as would Old Big Ears, though we’re not sure on the market for Carabao Cups. Could always take the ribbons off.

Parma Calcio 1913 earned successive promotions, returning to the top flight in 2018 before being relegated back to Serie B in 2021.

Rangers entered administration during the 2011/12 season and were docked 10 points before HMRC voted against a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) on the back of debts of £134m, meaning the club would have to be reformed. They kept their name, but Rangers were liquidated and forced to start over in the Third Division of Scottish football.

Ally McCoist’s side topped the third tier at the first attempt and they eventually made it back to the Scottish Premiershi0p in 2016, ending a decade-long wait for the title in 2021 under Steven Gerrard.

Steaua Bucharest
Steaua Bucharest are (or were?) a bona fide European giant, winning 26 Romanian titles, 24 Romanian Cups and the European Cup in 1986 after beating Barcelona in the final. But the team currently using that name are in the second tier, with no hope of promotion as it’s now owned by the Romanian army, and public-owned clubs are barred from the top division. It’s all a bit complicated.

The Ministry of National Defense sued Steaua Bucharest in 2011, claiming the Romanian Army were the rightful owners of the Steaua logo, colours, honours and name. As a result the club changed its name to ‘SC Fotbal Club FCSB SA’ (catchy, eh?), colloquially known as FC FCSB, and have continued winning titles and playing in Europe, where they continue to be known by most as Steaua Bucharest.

In what must be quite the blow for the fake Steaua Bucharest – quite apart from not being allowed to play in the top flight after promotion from Liga IV through Liga III to Liga II since they began life in 2017 – when you search for a club by that name, Google reverts you to FC FCSB, the OG Steaua. You Ain’t Got No History, and all that.

The Premier League-blinkered among us may chiefly remember Boavista from their clashes with Liverpool and Manchester United in the 2001/02 Champions League, as they drew home and away against Gerard Houllier’s side in the first group stage before getting spanked by an aggregate score of 6-0 by United in the second.

They’ve played in Europe just once since – the following campaign – and were demoted to the second tier at the end of the 2007/08 season as a result of a match-fixing scandal known as ‘Golden Whistle’, which involved chariman Valentim Loureiro bribing officials.

Boavista were then relegated from the second tier, finishing second bottom due to financial issues and stayed in Liga 3 until the 2014-15 season, when they went straight back into the top flight having won a long legal battle. They’ve finished mid-table ever since.

Marseille became the first team to win the Champions League in 1993, as the side featuring Marcel Desailly, Fabien Barthez and Abedi Pele, and captained by Didier Deschamps overcame AC Milan in the final. But controversy soon followed.

Marseille president Bernard Tapie and general manager Jean-Pierre Bernes were found to have contacted Valenciennes players Jorge Burruchaga, Jacques Glassmann, and Christophe Robert through Marseille player Jean-Jacques Eydelie, who asked them to underperform in the Ligue 1 match six days before the European final so that the Marseille players could remain fresh for the showpiece event.

Burruchaga and Robert accepted the bribe but Glassmann refused and was awarded the 1995 FIFA Fair Play Award having turned whistleblower.

Marseille were relegated and their league title was taken away, but second-placed Paris Saint-Germain declined it so no team is classed as winning Ligue 1 in 1992/93.

They returned to the top flight in 1996/97 and have won just the one title since, with PSG the almost entirely dominant force of the last decade.

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