Chelsea and Manchester City could be playing with trimmed squads in European competitions or could even be expelled if they decide to spend more on buying players this season.
UEFA's strict financial fair play rules have been brought in this season and as per the rules, clubs are not allowed to have arrears of more than £36 million over a period of two years. Although the sanctions for defaulting clubs will be enforced from the 2013-14 season as reported by a UK website, City and Chelsea have almost no chance to cut back their losses to within acceptable limits.
The situation seems bleak, more for the Manchester club with losses of £197m last year. Their London counterparts were £67.7m in arrears.
It is certain that both the clubs have players on their target for the next season. Chelsea have already agreed a deal on Marko Marin from Werder Bremen and according to reports have Gonzalo Higuain (Real Madrid), Luka Modric (Spurs), Eden Hazard (Lille) and Hulk (FC Porto) on their shortlist. Manchester City too are eyeing Hazard, Edison Cavani (Roma), Fernando Llorente (Athletic Bilbao) and Modric.
Estimates put value for these signings over £150m.
UEFA's director of legal affairs, Alasdair Bell, has been vocal about the sanctions applying to clubs which do not abide by the rules.
The first offence would lead to a withdrawal of up to 5 players from the team's squad in the European championship. Subsequent offence would mean a ban from European competitions from the next year.
Bell said,"Sanctions need to be sufficiently effective and credible to make people abide by the rules. If we're not capable of enforcing the system, in a way in which makes Financial Fair Play a reality, then we might as well forget it.
"Clubs who maybe have made more serious and effective efforts to bring their own house in order will expect the rules to be applied to those who have not done that."
UEFA's main aim is to regularise and stabilise finances in football in the wake of alarmingly increasing debts on some of the biggest clubs in the sport.
"The sanctions system has to be tailored to encourage rather than punish. But if certain clubs are just ignoring the system, we are going to face legitimate demands from others to do something about it. This is a balancing exercise that will have to be carried out by the panel," said Bell.
City appear to have found a way out though with a reported £400m, 10-year sponsorship by the Etihad airline which would balance the UEFA Financial Fair Play shift in their favour. Ironically even that deal is under the scrutiny of UEFA as the airline is owned by the royal family and City's owner, Sheikh Mansour, belongs to that family.
Bell says that the new panel will scrutinise such deals in the same way that the European Union Commission assess whether a country is providing illegal state aid to its own industry.
"We have to determine whether a sponsorship deal is genuine or a disguised capital injection," he said.