Unless they magically win their appeal, Manchester City will not be playing in any European competition for the next two seasons. Now, how will this affect them? Will it make the club stronger or will it lead to its disintegration?
Pep Guardiola has been making the necessary noise about his loyalty to the club and that he would stay at the Etihad even if they were demoted to play in League Two.
Analysts believe this is him just being defiant in the face of what he sees as injustice. When he sobers down and reality hits him, will he still be saying the same thing?
Knowing that whatever position he leads the club to in the next two seasons, he will not be allowed to test his expertise against the best clubs in Europe, knowing that no matter how good his team is, no matter how good his tactics are, he won’t have the chance to win the champions league, will he then continue to stay? And if he stays, will he be motivated to give his best, go the extra mile?
Talking about motivation. How do the players fare in this? The pride of every player in European football is to be able to play with the elites in the champions league.
If City players realise this opportunity has been taken away from them, will they willing to stay, will they be motivated to give their best to finish in the top four, knowing that the club that finishes in fifth position will take their place?
About the recruitment. How many world class players will be willing to come to a club knowing they won’t be allowed to play in the champions league for the first two seasons at the club?
Wouldn’t they rather wait until the ban is lifted? To convince such players to come over, City may need to pay their present clubs more money and they may need to pay the players a few hundred thousands more.
The question now is, with the Fair Play dagger hanging on their heads, will City be able to afford all these extra payments without flouting the rules yet again?
The owners of the club seem to have unlimited pots of cash to spend. With this ban, will they think it worth their while spending millions on new players only for them to win the Carabao and FA cups?
They have won the league several times already, will that be enough motivation for them to spend the millions of pounds as they will have to do if they want to knock Liverpool off their perch?
Liverpool will spend more money to improve an already formidable team, will City be willing to match them pound for pound just to win the league? Questions, questions questions.
Hopefully the answers will be revealed sooner rather than later.