Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho has jokingly asked whether Manchester City’s two-year ban from UEFA for breaching Financial Fair Play rules, means they will be stripped of their 2018 Premier League title.
Mourinho guided Manchester United to second place in that season, finishing 19 points behind Pep Guardiola’s side.
“I didn’t lose one single minute analysing what UEFA have to analyse,” Mourinho told a news conference after Spurs won 3-2 at Aston Villa in the league on Sunday (Feb 16).
“If I go into that, I have to ask if the team that finished second in 2018 is going to be champions, yes or no?
“That would be interesting but joking apart, I just wait calmly.” “I don’t think it is about huge decisions or small decisions,” said Mourinho. “The rule, the law, it is or it isn’t. Uefa punish them but they have the chance to appeal.
“Until the appeal finishes, Manchester City have the benefit of the doubt. In the end of the process we will see if they are punished or not,” he added.
The Premier League have also opened an investigation into City’s finances. City manager Guardiola is an old rival of Mourinho’s from their time in Spanish football.
Victory at Villa Park for Spurs, thanks to a stoppage time winner from South Korean Son Heung-min, moved Mourinho’s men up to fifth place, a point behind Chelsea who hold the fourth and final Champions League qualification spot.
Fifth may be enough to secure Champions League football if second-placed City’s two-year ban from the competition is upheld.
The ban was imposed by UEFA on Friday after an investigation into alleged breaches of Financial Fair Play rules but the club are appealing the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Switzerland.
Mourinho said he wasn’t going to worry about the decision’s impact on his team’s chances of making it into Europe’s premier club competition.
“Fourth or fifth, I just think about doing the best we can,” he said.
“The more points we can get the better position we can get. At the end of the season we’ll see where we are. If we are sixth or seventh then it doesn’t matter if the fifth goes to Champions League.”