'Manchester City need punishment or what’s the point of football?'
Manchester City are facing the biggest financial scandal in the Premier League's history after being hit with more than 100 alleged breaches of regulations.
A reprimand, deduction of points, sweeping fines and even expulsion from the Premier League are among the range of punishments City could face.
Following the revelations on Monday, Telegraph readers took to the comments section to discuss what they deem appropriate penalties for the club, should they be found guilty.
‘Man City should be stripped of their titles’
Matt G: “About time this happened, although the punishment will not be enough. As a Liverpool fan, I think Manchester City should be stripped of their titles but they should not be awarded to anyone else. The years in question should just read ‘void - no winner’.
“The fine must be minimum into the hundreds of millions and they should be put into league two. Any less makes a mockery of the sport. Billionaires don’t care, and they will think ‘I can cheat my way to success and then pay a fifty million fine and get a ten point deduction in ten years. That’s cool.’
“This needs serious punishment or what’s the point of football?”
‘The owners should be forced to sell the club’
Dougal Paver: “We're all missing an important point: should the charges be proven against Manchester City, the sheer scale and persistence of the alleged malfeasance means that the owners should be forced to sell the club under the 'fit and proper persons' test. No ifs or buts.”
‘Expelling them would be the nuclear option and would backfire’
Mel Shaw: "Get real! A fine or a points deduction are the most likely. Expelling them would be the nuclear option and would backfire. If the Premier League are not careful they will breathe new life into the Super League."
“Sanctions like those imposed against Juventus should be a minimum benchmark”
B.B: “Sanctions similar to those imposed against Juventus in Serie A should be a minimum benchmark for any wrongdoing that is proven to have happened.
“Yes, they bounced back up almost straight away, but a big bonus was for the lower division clubs. They got to play Juventus a lot and pocket a big gate receipt. It took the team a long time to build up to their old position in Serie A again. No European games, no big players wishing to join, reduced income and still having to pay inflated contracts.
“Could it happen to Manchester City? It's a big possibility if the breaches are as flagrant as everyone believes.
“The Premier League will have learnt from the Uefa/City FFP clown show and will ensure that this time the case and any resulting punishments is legally watertight with no technicality wriggle room for lawyers to exploit.”
“I wouldn't mind starting all over again”
Roy Harper: “As a Manchester City fan of 80 years standing, I wouldn't mind starting all over again. For lots of reasons: we'd be taking 30,000 supporters to Macclesfield again. It would be one hell of a journey. Every season would be a triumph. There would be failures, but we'd take them like we always did. 'Typical City'.
“Actually, if it really happened, it would be something to enjoy deeply. City vs United in the National League. Amazing. No half baked accusations. No recriminations. No identity crisis. Nothing except perhaps a stronger self worth for every Manc. Personally, I'd love it.
“Shame that it can't happen, it's impossible. Shame that modern media made our local game so popular. Shame that 'market forces' took it over. What a dream, probably shared by quite a few of us.”
“Reward other clubs in the league and cup competitions with their titles”
Geoff Leopard: “Players bought and paid for, with 'illegal' money, have altered the leagues and cups dramatically.
“Strip Manchester City of their ill-gained titles, and kick them down a league or two.
“Additionally, reward other clubs in the league and cup competitions with their titles, as the fines and point deductions to the team this season are meaningless.”
“No sanction should be considered too punitive”
Dougal Paver: “To cheat – or, as is alleged here, game the system on an almost industrial scale – is to undermine the very integrity of the league and no sanction should be considered too punitive.
“If found to be guilty, then, as with Juventus, Rangers, Darlington and Saracens, relegation down several leagues must be on the table, plus heavy financial sanctions over as many seasons as the malfeasance occurred.
If they are allowed to keep their titles? Well, everybody knows that they will be tainted and worthless. Fit and proper persons, eh?”
“We need a wholesale restructuring so that every team has a fair chance of success”
Richard Phillips: “Regardless of any of City's possible transgressions, the issue that should be addressed but isn't and won't be is that the Premier League is anything but a level playing field. It is the most unfair of competitions. It is the old Yeovil pitch with six or seven clubs kicking downhill all the time and the rest struggling for breath as they try to defy the forces of financial gravity.
“I am not advocating an end to the promotion and relegation pyramid - although, it is often conveniently forgotten that English football was itself a closed shop until 1987 - but if "financial fair play" is to have any real meaning, then we need to go a lot further than fret about what Manchester City did or didn't tell the Premier League about their finances.
“We need a wholesale restructuring so that every team has a fair chance of success.”