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Deloitte have published the 22nd edition of their annual Football Money League, which ranks the world’s leading football clubs by revenue, this time covering the 2017/18 season. Some thoughts in the following thread.
Real Madrid £665m reclaimed top spot, while Barcelona £612m made it a Spanish “one-two” – the first clubs to break the £600m barrier. #MUFC £590m fell to 3rd, having been 1st last year. Bayern Munich £557m and #MCFC £503m retained 4th & 5th places, while PSG £480m were up to 6th.
There are no fewer than six English clubs in the top ten, including #LFC £455m, #CFC £448m, #AFC £389m and #THFC £379m (overtaking Juventus). Roma, Milan and #NUFC were new entrants to the top 20, replacing #LCFC, #SaintsFC and Napoli.
Total revenue for the top 20 clubs rose £607m (9%) from £6.8 bln to £7.4 bln, split between broadcasting £3.1 bln (42%), commercial £2.6 bln (40%) & match day £1.1 bln (17%). Individual clubs have a very different revenue mix: TV #EFC 75%; commercial PSG 58%; match day #AFC 25%.
Changes in exchange rate have adversely impacted English clubs relative to continental peers, as Sterling weakened 3% against the Euro (1.1637 to 1.1289 this year). For example, #MUFC revenue fell €10m with exchange rate movement of €(20)m offsetting underlying growth of €10m.
However, the exchange rate movement is nowhere near as significant this year as the previous year, when Sterling fell 13%. It is worth noting that if we used the 2015/16 pre-Brexit rate of 1.3371, then #MUFC revenue would be €789m, i.e. the highest in the world.
The highest growth year-on-year came from #NUFC £93m, after promotion to the Premier League. #LFC had the largest growth in top 10 of £91m, and are the highest climbers, jumping 2 spots to 7th. #AFC had largest decrease of £30m, dropping 3 places to 9th, their lowest since 2005.
Growth profile is very different at each club, e.g. #NUFC led the way in TV with £79m following promotion to Premier League, while #LFC Champions League exploits drove £66m rise. Largest commercial growth at Real Madrid £57m, PSG £42m & #MCFC £37m. Match day saw #THFC up £30m.
In England the gap between #MUFC £590m and #MCFC £503m closed by £41m, but is still £87m. There is now only £10m between #AFC £389m and #THFC £379m, following the Gunners’ failure to qualify for the Champions League. Promotion drove the inclusion of #NUFC £178m and #BHAFC £139m.
The importance of Champions League qualification is clear, as this was the main driver behind the large growth at #LFC (£365m to £455m), following the Reds’ run to the final, and #CFC (£368m to £448m). This was also partly the reason for #THFC growth (£306m to £379m).
It was a mixed bag for Italy, as Roma and Milan returned to the top 20, so they were the second most represented country with 4 clubs, but Juventus dropped out of the top 10 for the first time since 2011/12. Roma had impressive £73m growth to £221m, while Juve were flat at £350m.
The hefty growth at Real Madrid (£580m to £665m) and Barcelona (£557m to £612m) was largely driven by commercial deals. Impressive improvements at Atletico Madrid (£234m to £270m), following move to the new stadium, and Sevilla (£86m to £146m), due to return to Champions League.
In Germany Bayern Munich grew from £505m to £557m, mainly due to TV, after reaching Champions League semi-final & new Bundesliga deal. The Bavarians have twice as much revenue as Borussia Dortmund, who dropped £5m to £281m, as merchandising sales fell. Schalke improved to £216m.
Paris Saint-Germain’s growth from £418m to £480m was largely due to commercial income, as the high-profile signings of Neymar and Mbappé helped drive business off the pitch. PSG revenue is more than 3 times Lyon’s £145m, down from £180m after not qualifying for Champions League.
The combined revenue of the top 20 clubs rose by €449m (6%) to a record €8.3 bln. Interestingly, the main driver of growth was commercial income, up €338m (11%), as broadcasting slightly dropped (only Germany had a new TV cycle starting), while match day rose €115m (9%).
Broadcasting remains the most valuable revenue stream, but its share has fallen from 45% to 42%, while commercial has increased from 38% to 40%. Match day slightly increased from 16.8% to 17.3%, but has still slumped from 26% in 2009.
Barcelona £128m and Real Madrid £127m have the highest match day revenue (including membership fees), ahead of #MUFC £106m and #AFC £99m. The largest growth here was #THFC, who increased by £30m (67%) to £75m following the temporary move to Wembley.
However, #AFC still have the highest percentage of revenue from match day with 25%, ahead of Barcelona 21%, #THFC 20% and Schalke 19%. At the other end of the spectrum we find #EFC and #MCFC with match day contributing just 9% and 11% respectively.
Champions League finalists #LFC and Real Madrid generated the most broadcasting income with £223m apiece, followed by 4 English clubs benefiting from the sizeable PL TV deal: #MCFC £212m, #CFC £204m, #MUFC £204m & #THFC £201m. CL impact even greater next year after 54% increase.
The importance of the Premier League TV deal to medium-size English clubs is highlighted by #EFC generating 75% of their revenue from broadcasting, followed by #NUFC 71% and #WHUFC 68%. Smallish domestic deals contribute to low shares at PSG 24% and Bayern 28%.
Commercially, Real Madrid £316m overtook Bayern Munich £309m. These two plus Barcelona £286m, #MUFC £280m, PSG £278m & #MCFC £235m are well above the rest. Given the slowdown in the PL TV deal, English clubs need to optimise commercial deals, especially #AFC £107m & #THFC £103m.
As might be expected, PSG 58% and Bayern 55% lead the way in terms of the importance of commercial income to total revenue, but then come Inter 53% (new deals following Suning acquisition). Worth noting that #MCFC is “only” 47%, same as #MUFC and Real Madrid.
If we exclude broadcasting income, the leading clubs are similar, though Bayern and PSG are both one place higher and the range of the top 5 clubs is much lower (£76m vs. £162m). Without the boost of the Premier League TV money, the gap to mid-tier English clubs is much larger.
The total number of English clubs in the top 20 fell from a record 10 to 9, with Italy increasing from 3 to 4. Germany and Spain had three clubs with one from France. For the second consecutive year, there are no clubs outside of the “Big Five” leagues in the top 20.
In fact, there are only three clubs outside the “Big Five” leagues in the top 30, namely Zenit Saint Petersburg £149m, Besiktas £147m (thanks to reaching the Champions League last 16) and Benfica £133m (third consecutive year for the Portuguese club).
English strength is further reflected with 13 representatives in the top 30, though this is 1 less than last year and well down from the peak of 17 in 2015. To underpin the Premier League’s strength, #BHAFC £139m are in 29th place in their first season in the top tier since 1983.
Highest growth of the top placed club from each of the “Big Five” leagues was at Real Madrid €76m, followed by Paris Saint-German €55m and Bayern Munich €42m. Both Juventus and #MUFC actually saw their revenue fall, by €11m and €10m respectively.
The gap between top and bottom, defined as 1st place to 20th place, increased from €477m to a record €553m. This has been on a steadily upward trend, nearly tripling from €207 million in 2006. In other words, the rich get richer.
On the other hand, the gap between the 10th place club and 11th place club narrowed from €50m to €33m, mainly due to #THFC €428m over-taking Juventus €395m. That said, this gap was as low as €7m in 2013.
The financial threshold for membership of the Money League club is around €200m. This has become increasingly challenging, basically doubling in the nine years since 2009 from €100m.
Although the Money League gives a partial picture of finances, only focusing on revenue, it remains a useful indicator of success on the pitch. The lack of substantial increases in the next Premier League TV cycle may mean that clubs from other leagues begin to narrow the gap.
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