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Decision throws almighty spanner in grand plans

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At a time when the City squad requires a rebuild and Guardiola is targeting as many as five new signings this summer, UEFA’s decision threatens to throw an almighty spanner in the works.

Photo: Reuters/Phil Noble/File Photo David Silva may not have picked a bad time to be leaving Manchester City after all.

Rebuild Moreover, at a time when the City squad requires a rebuild and Guardiola is targeting as many as five new signings this summer, Uefa's decision threatens to throw an almighty spanner in the works.



This was always going to be the Spaniard's final City campaign after a decade at the Etihad Stadium but, as the bombshell news of Uefa's decision to ban the club from the Champions League for the next two seasons circulated last night, it seemed fair to wonder how many more will be carefully considering their futures in the weeks ahead.

There is unlikely to be much sympathy from City's main Premier League rivals either, not when a Champions League ban would, under Uefa rules, effectively offer a route into Europe's premier club competition for the side who finish fifth in England's top flight this term.

Of course, that ban will effectively be put on hold once City appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), and given the fury dripping from every line of their 168-word statement, that particular submission is likely to come quicker than Kevin De Bruyne sees a pass.

With Mauricio Pochettino available following his sacking by Tottenham last year, perhaps replacing Guardiola would not be so problematic, but would City hold quite the same appeal to the Argentine without Champions League football?
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