London (AFP) – Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has “a lot of confidence” his club will avoid a two-season ban from European competitions when the verdict of their appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) is revealed later this month.
City were banned from UEFA competitions for two years by the European governing body in February after being found guilty of overstating sponsorship outcome to avoid breaches of Financial Fair Play regulations.
Their case was heard by CAS last month and the club have always been bullish about the potential outcome.
“We are ready. I have a lot of confidence and trust with the people that we will be allowed to play the Champions League, because we want to be on the field during these years,” said Guardiola.
“On July 13 we will know the resolution, hopefully, for the club – all the workers, players and everyone here, staff – to try to continue growing up as a club in the next years.”
Amid the off-field issues, City remain one of the favourites to win this season’s Champions League, which is now due to resume in August.
City hold a 2-1 lead over Real Madrid after the first leg of their last-16 tie.
There is still uncertainty over where the return match will be played with the rest of the competition from the quarter-finals to be played at neutral venues in Lisbon.
City may have surrendered their Premier League title to Liverpool but a 4-0 thrashing of the newly-crowned English champions on Thursday showed why Guardiola’s men are still among the most feared sides in Europe.
“Every game is different but I cannot deny beating Liverpool the way we did (was good),” said Guardiola, whose side travel to Southampton in the Premier League on Sunday. “Football is about feelings, moments.
“Sometimes your mood is up, sometimes it is down when you face these games, but we can say we beat maybe the best team in the world right now. So we can do it.
“Every game is different, (FA Cup semi-final opponents) Arsenal play different, Madrid play different. Each game you have to adjust the qualities.
“What I want is to arrive in the best conditions possible to these games and after put mentality on the pitch.
“These games are not won with tactics or ideas, it is desire. We want to do it. When one team wants to do it – OK they can be beaten – but it will not be easy for the opponent.”
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