Life is too short to carry grudges – Manchester City chairman opens up over UEFA

Manchester City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak insists the club hold no grudge against UEFA.

Al Mubarak wants to consign the Financial Fair Play issue to history and build a “constructive relationship” with European football’s governing body.

UEFA banned City from European competition for two seasons earlier this year for alleged breaches of its FFP rules but the club successfully overturned the punishment on appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Life is too short to carry grudges. It’s behind us, end of story as far as I am concerned.

With City regulars in the Champions League there are thoughts ill-feeling could linger in some quarters, but Al Mubarak hopes all can move on.

“Life is too short to carry grudges,” he said. “It is an important competition. It is one of the most prestigious competitions in the world of sports and it is a competition we want to win and it is a competition we have to respect in order to win.

“And this was a challenge. It’s behind us, end of story as far as I am concerned.

“I am focused on one thing – how I can help this club compete in this competition and win it, and how to have a constructive relationship with UEFA. I think it’s the only way to go.”

City have played in the Champions League every season since 2011-12 – (Copyright PA Archive)

Next season will be City’s 10th in succession in the Champions League. Their latest attempt to win it ended in quarter-final defeat to Lyon earlier this month.

The club have strengthened for next term with the signings of defender Nathan Ake from Bournemouth and winger Ferran Torres from Valencia and further additions are likely in the summer transfer window.

City have been strongly linked with Napoli centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly and, while Al Mubarak has not named any targets, he says any signings will be made with an eye on the long term.

He added: “We don’t take a one year view, we take a three, five, 10-year view and when we look at what changes or improvements we have to make for this squad, we’re going to make them and we’ll be sensible and pragmatic about it but we will do what it takes.

“I think you’ve seen when it comes to the two acquisitions we have made, Ake and Ferran Torres, we moved quickly.

“We knew the players clearly, these were our targets and when the opportunity came, we were able to come in very quickly and swiftly and do that business.

“There are additional players we will be bringing in and we will stick to the plan obviously within the realities of the market that we live in today.”