- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 7, 2012

STRASBOURG, FRANCE (AP) - A European lawmakers’ advisory group says UEFA should stop clubs like Manchester City from being sponsored by their owners.

A Council of Europe sports governance report says “improper transactions” help avoid UEFA’s financial fair play rules, which seek to regulate clubs’ spending.

The report points to the Abu Dhabi royal family’s ownership of Man City and the Etihad airline, which have “a contract estimated at over $590 million).”

It says “UEFA should prohibit clubs from sponsoring themselves or using associated bodies to do so.”

The report also cites Real Madrid and suggests a ban on clubs receiving “state aid.” It says Madrid banked $525 million by selling training fields to city authorities.

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