Manchester City have been banned from European competition for the next two seasons after the English club were found to have committed “serious breaches” of UEFA’s club licensing and financial fair play regulations.
In addition, City have also been fined 30m euros (£25m).
The club can, however, appeal against the ban at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
The ban was handed down by the Independent Adjudicatory Chamber of the Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) and relate to a long-running investigation that sought to determine if the English club gained unfair competitive advantage through underhand means.
The CFCB chaired by Jose da Cunha Rodrigues determined that City had broken the rules by “overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to Uefa between 2012 and 2016”.
City were also accused of refusing “to cooperate in the investigation of the case”.
The English club had sought to bring a halt to the investigations last year but their case was thrown out by the Court of Arbitration for Sport which left European football governing body free to examine the club’s books.
The club has, however, indicated that they will appeal the “prejudicial” decision adding that they are “disappointed but not surprised” by the CFCB’s verdict.
Manchester City said in a statement: “The club has always anticipated the ultimate need to seek out an independent body and process to impartially consider the comprehensive body of irrefutable evidence in support of its position.
“In December 2018, the Uefa chief investigator publicly previewed the outcome and sanction he intended to be delivered to Manchester City, before any investigation had even begun.
“The subsequent flawed and consistently leaked Uefa process he oversaw has meant that there was little doubt in the result that he would deliver. The club has formally complained to the Uefa disciplinary body, a complaint which was validated by a CAS ruling.
“Simply put, this is a case initiated by Uefa, prosecuted by Uefa and judged by Uefa. With this prejudicial process now over, the club will pursue an impartial judgment as quickly as possible and will therefore, in the first instance, commence proceedings with the Court of Arbitration for Sport at the earliest opportunity.”
City have been drawn to face Real Madrid in the last 16 of this season’s Champions League, with the first leg to be played on 26 February at the Santiago Bernabeu.