Manchester City 'launch legal action against Premier League'

It's reported Manchester City are suing the Premier League Credit: ITV news

Manchester City are reportedly seeking damages from the Premier League as they look to throw out the league's "unlawful" rules, which have caused a major divide among Premier League clubs.

Associated Party Transaction (APT) rules were introduced in December 2021 following the Saudi takeover of Newcastle United, and are designed to stop clubs inflating commercial deals with companies linked to their owners.

They were brought in in an effort to maintain the competitiveness of the Premier League, following an increase in state ownership of the clubs.

The Times is reporting in a two-week private arbitration hearing, due to start on Monday 10 June, City will attempt to end those APT rules as the club has argued they are against competition law.

It is claimed City also say the rules are discriminatory to clubs with ties to the Gulf region and clubs that are based outside of London.

(L-R) Manchester City Chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak, Manager Pep Guardiola, CEO Ferran Soriano, and Director of Football, Txiki Begiristain. Credit: PA Images

As well as looking to end the rules, the club is also said to be seeking damages for money it has not been able to make since the rules were brought in.

If City are successful, it would enable the richest clubs to value their sponsorship deals without them being independently assessed, which could potentially massively boost their transfer funds.

"The league's other 19 clubs have been invited to participate in the legal action and The Times understands between 10 and 12 have stepped forward, providing either witness statements or a letter detailing evidence in support of the Premier League's defence against the claim," added the report.

"Those who have provided witness statements may be called by the tribunal to give evidence at the hearing."

The Premier League has told ITV Granada Reports it will not be making any comment on this.

Manchester City has also been approached for a comment.