Manchester United confident Uefa will not demote them from Europa League – Football News

Manchester United confident Uefa will not demote them from Europa League

Sir Jim Ratcliffe is confident Manchester United will not be demoted from the Europa League and will be allowed to compete next season alongside Nice, the French club he also owns via his company Ineos.

Uefa regulations prevent an organisation or person from wielding “decisive influence” over more than one club in the same competition. Ratcliffe has a 27.7% stake in United and controls the club’s football policy, and Ineos has owned Nice since 2019.

Uefa has a deadline of Monday for clubs to satisfy its rules. Ineos believes it must indicate by then the adjustments it will make and that their implementation can follow. Rulings will be delivered by Uefa in the summer and if United were to lose the case they would be demoted to the Europa Conference League because they finished lower in the Premier League (eighth) than Nice did in Ligue 1 (fifth).

United qualified for the Europa League by winning the FA Cup final against Manchester City. An Ineos statement said: “We are aware of the position of both clubs and are in direct dialogue with Uefa. We are confident that we have a route forward for next season in Europe.”

Manchester City and Girona, who each qualified for the Champions League, have to make a similar case to Uefa. This is because City Football Group owns 81% of the English champions and 44.3% of the Spanish club.

Ineos believes it has conducted positive discussions with Uefa over the past months, it is understood, and that the precedent of other multi-club organisations playing in the same European competition points to a solution.

RB Salzburg and RB Leipzig competed in the 2017-18 Champions League despite each being owned by Red Bull GmbH. Uefa investigators found the company exerted a strong influence over both clubs but its club financial control body found there were not enough grounds to believe there was influence running between the two clubs after certain members of staff linked to Red Bull and loan arrangements between the teams had been removed.

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Last July three sets of partner clubs – Brighton and Union Saint-Gilloise; Aston Villa and Vitória Guimarães; and Toulouse and Milan – were allowed to compete in the same European competitions. Uefa referred then to “significant changes by the clubs and their related investors” to comply with the rules.

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