English Premier League football clubs make up 10 of the top 20 highest revenue generating clubs in world football, according to the 21st edition of the Deloitte Football Money League from the Sports Business Group of Deloitte UK.
Published just eight months after the end of the 2016/17 season, the Money League is the most contemporary and reliable independent analysis of the clubs’ relative financial performance.
Aggregate revenue for the top 20 Money League clubs rose 6 per cent to €7.9 billion (£6.8 billion) in 2016/76, a new record, with the top three clubs—Manchester United, FC Barcelona, and Real Madrid—earning a combined revenue of €2 billion for the first time.
Manchester United retained top spot for a second consecutive year, generating total revenue of €676 million (£581m). This year’s battle for first place was the closest in Money League history, just €1.7 million (£1.5m) separated Manchester United and second place Real Madrid: United’s win in the Europa League Final proving critical in the club topping the list for a tenth time. Real Madrid moved back above FC Barcelona into second place thanks to strong commercial growth in 2016/17 and a title-winning season in both domestic and European competitions, with Bayern Munich and Manchester City making up the remainder of the Money League top five.
A place in the top 20 now requires revenue of approximately €200 million, a 16 per cent increase on the previous year and double the amount required in the 2010 edition of the Money League.
The English Premier League has ten teams in the top 20 this year, the highest ever from one country, with Southampton (18th) making their debut in the Money League top 20, Manchester City consolidating their place in the top five, and Leicester City rising to 14th, from 20th last year. Outside the top 20, there are four more English clubs ranked 21-30, including AFC Bournemouth who debut in 28th place.
In the longer term, changes to the Champions League format from 2018/19 and the new Premier League domestic and international broadcast rights agreements commencing in 2019/20 will be key influencing factors on the membership and order of clubs in future editions of the Money League, according to Deloitte.
Dan Jones, partner in the sports business group at Deloitte, said that Manchester United’s ability to retain first position was all the more impressive against the backdrop of the weakened pound against the Euro, and that with both Real Madrid and FC Barcelona forecasting further revenue growth in 2017/18, the battle at the top would likely come down to on-pitch performance again next year.
“With all three clubs through to the round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League, it may be as simple as the club that goes furthest in the competition will have the best chance of topping the money league next year,” he suggested.
2016/17 Revenue (€m)
|Atlético de Madrid||272.5|
|West Ham United