Pep Guardiola insisted he is ready to accept any punishment UEFA may hand Manchester City for alleged breaches of Financial Fair Play regulations but reiterated his trust in the club’s hierarchy.
City’s celebrations following last weekend’s title triumph – and their build-up to Saturday’s FA Cup final against Watford – have been overshadowed after the club were on Thursday referred to the European governing body’s adjudicatory chamber over the matter.
City issued a statement to say they were “disappointed, but regrettably not surprised” by the news, with a future ban from the Champions League one of a number of possible punishments now facing them.
The Premier League champions say they are “disappointed but not surprised” by the decision and claim they will be completely exonerated
Guardiola said he could not predict what will happen but insisted his faith in the club was undiminished.
“I’m sorry. If we did something wrong, and UEFA decide we did something wrong we will be banned or we will be punished,” he said.
“Right now I know the people are waiting for us to be guilty but we are innocent until it is proven.
“I spoke with the chairman, with the CEO, I know exactly what happened, exactly what they did and I trust a lot of them. That’s all.”
With such a punishment perhaps hanging over the club, rumours consistently linking Guardiola with the soon-to-be vacant position at Juventus could carry more weight but the Catalan insisted he would see out the two years remaining on the contract extension he signed a year ago.
PEP 💬 How many times do I have to say? I’m not going to move to Turin, to Italy.
I am satisfied working with this club, with the people here. That is how I feel today, but football changes a lot.
Next season may not be as good, but I am going to be manager of Man City.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) May 17, 2019
“How many times do I have to say?” Guardiola said. “I’m not going to Juventus, I’m not going to move to Italy. I’m staying here for two more seasons, if they want me. I have a contract. I’m not going to move.
“I’m satisfied working here with this club, with these people here and I’m not going anywhere. This is what I feel today.
“But football changes a lot, results can be not good next season and maybe next season will not be good. But next season I’m manager of Man City. I’ve said many times.”