By Dr Dan Plumley

11th Jan, 2022 | 4:00pm

Finance guru 'baffled' by behind-the-scenes blunder as Man City in 'damage limitation' mode

Man City entered “damage limitation” mode as soon as their deal with cryptocurrency provider 3Key came under scrutiny.

That is the view of finance expert Doctor Dan Plumley, speaking exclusively to Football Insider about the aborted commercial partnership.

City announced 3Key as an “official regional partner” in November last year, but the deal was suspended amid questions over the firm’s legitimacy.

Investigations found that 3Key’s website was non-functional and that its supposed employees had no online footprint.

The Daily Mail reported last Wednesday (5 January) that City have now officially cancelled the partnership.

The Premier League champions maintain that all due diligence was carried out before they signed the contract.

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Plumley examined this claim and suggested that City are now simply trying to save face.

“You can understand why they are saying they have done due diligence,” the Sheffield Hallam University expert told Football Insider‘s Adam Williams.

“I find it hard to believe that there wasn’t due diligence done given the people they have working for the club.

“It baffled me a little bit because I don’t know why they wouldn’t have done the right checks.

“That said, when there is an about-turn on it, it becomes a bit of a damage limitation exercise. That angle will always be looked at.

“But they have also just signed a couple of new deals. In the grand scheme of things, it isn’t going to hurt City in terms of signing new deals.

“It’s just a bump in the road for those that organised this.”

City have 30 global sponsorship deals and 16 regional partners.

Emirates Palace and Masdar are the latest names to join the club’s cache of corporate associates.

In other news, ex-Premier League referee hails “terrific” decision as controversial Gabriel Jesus emerges from Man City