The Premier League champions are to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against their punishment, which included a fine of 30million euros (£24.9million), after an investigation into accounts submitted by the club between 2012 and 2016.
While the two-year exclusion from European competition imposed by the governing body would mean a significant loss of revenue, City have the weight of the Abu Dhabi and Chinese governments and United States private equity firm Silver Lake behind them in what will be a hotly-contested and hugely-significant court battle.
“This is where it really puts pressure on the manager Pep Guardiola,” Brown, who played for City between 1995 and 2000, told Sky Sports News.
“The test will be with him if he cannot strengthen in a way that he probably wanted in the summer.
“It might be a certain player who says ‘I want to go somewhere else for a different challenge’ with no Champions League, but there will be lots of other players who will want to come to Manchester City. That will be key.”