By Andy Sambidge
Club chairman 'very comfortable' with financial position; confident of hitting new UEFA debt targets
Manchester City chairman Khaldoon Al Mubarak has said the club is being managed "prudently" and he has no worries about meeting new financial targets being set by governing body UEFA.
Despite Abu Dhabi owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan spending more than $805m on the team since acquiring it in 2008, Al Mubarak said he was "very comfortable" with the financial operation at the club.
Asked about UEFA's new rules which would ban clubs who exceed agreed levels of debt from playing in European competitions, Al Mubarak said it was a driving force behind how he ran the club.
The new rules, known as financial fair play, will be phased in from June and will allow clubs to be able to record maximum losses of €45 million in total over the following three years.
From 2014 to 2017, the overall permitted loss will fall to €30m with the first possible exclusions from UEFA competition taking place in 2014-15.
"Financial fair play drives us...The club is being managed very prudently. There's very good governance... I am very comfortable, very confident with our financial operation," he told the club's official website in a video interview.
"You have to keep that [financial fair play] in mind in the way we structure every acquisition and we have done that over the last three years...we are now in a position where we are working towards financial fair play."
He said the club's qualification for the Champions League and the winning of the FA Cup would have "very positive financial implications" for club, adding that he had no worries about the financial side of the club.
He also said the club was exploring "every single commercial avenue", opportunities which he said were growing due to the success of the club this season.
He did not rule out the possibility of selling naming rights for the City of Manchester Stadium.
He said he was delighted with the season just finishing but added: "Our ambitions are much bigger than that. We won the FA CUp, that's great, but there are a lot more cups to win...we want to win the league."
The club chairman said his personal highlight of the season was the 1-0 victory in the FA Cup semi-final over arch-rivals Manchester United.
"That was a special moment," he said.
He ruled out a major spending spree on players this season and said the priority was to keep the "heart and soul and backbone" of the squad already assembled.
“It won't be like last summer, or the summer before. What you will see this year is strengthening the squad in areas that we feel require more depth,” he said.
Al Mubarak also pledged to continue investing in the club's academy, saying he was very optimistic about the young talent coming through the club.
"This is a priority for the business side of it [the club]. We need a successful academy and that's what we are trying to do."