The 23approx Deloitte Football Money League Reveals the top 20 top-grossing football clubs for the 2018/19 season with combined revenues up 11% to € 9.3 billion, a new record.
The five top-grossing clubs in this edition of the Money League are FC Barcelona (Total sales of € 840.8 million), real Madrid (€ 757.3 million), Manchester United (€ 711.5 million), Bayern Munich (€ 660.1 million) and Paris St. Germain (€ 635.9m), which together generate more income than the 11 clubs in 10th placeNS until 20NS.
Transfer remains the largest individual source of income with 44% of total sales. The ability to generate significant commercial interest is a differentiator between the front runners (ie those who traditionally play regularly in the UEFA Champions League) and the bottom of the Money League. It is noteworthy that during an extended absence from UEFA club competitions, in particular the Champions League, which can significantly affect revenue generation, the top clubs are less dependent on broadcast revenues than smaller clubs.
Dan Jones, partner in the Sports Business Group at DeloitteHe commented, “The football industry continues to grow faster than other sectors and the top 20 Money League clubs are well on their way to grossing over € 10 billion in a single year in the near future.
“What is remarkable about this edition of the Money League is the apparent continued emergence of ‘mini-leagues within the Money League’ as the biggest revenue-generating clubs continue to stand out from the rest.”
With FC Barcelona, which for the first time reached the top of the Money League and at the same time the first club to break the 800 million euro mark, this year’s ranking sees a Spanish double victory for the second time in a row. Positions have swapped, however, with Real Madrid falling to second place; the gap between first and second place is the largest in the history of the publication at EUR 83.5 million.
The increase in FC Barcelona sales is largely due to the change in the club’s operating approach, with the decision to In-house merchandising and licensing activities a primary factor. The club has recognized the power of its brand and has more control over its merchandising and licensing activities rather than relying on third parties for these services. This has given the club additional control over how its products are advertised and sold, and the ability to report these revenues on a gross rather than a net basis.
Jones added: “Barca are a clear example of a club that is adapting to changing market conditions, reducing reliance on television revenue and focusing on increasing revenue within its control. The club’s commercial operations generated sales of € 383.5 million, which is more than the total revenue of the 12th-placed club in this year’s Money League.
“With the club growing further by 30m in 2019/20, Barca are well on their way to achieving their stated goal of being the first 1 billion euro Money League club in the years to come.”
The Premier League continues to contribute most clubs to the top 20 of the Money League, with eight clubs making the cut in this year’s edition.
Manchester United remains third with sales of £ 627.1m (€ 711.5m) but is currently forecasting sales of 560-580m, their lowest position in the Money League ever in next year’s edition. It could also lead to the club losing its position as the top-grossing club in the Premier League for the first time in Money League history. United’s closest national rivals, Manchester City and Liverpool, achieved sales of £ 538.2m (EUR 610.6m) and £ 533m (EUR 604.7m) respectively in 2018/19. Liverpool’s long-term ambitions to reach a top 5 position in the Money League in future editions are not unrealistic, especially if the club can build on their recent successes in the Premier League and winning the 2019 UEFA Champions League.
Tottenham Hotspur is eighth in this year’s Money League, the club’s highest position ever, and has overtaken Arsenal and Chelsea to become London’s top-grossing Money League club for the first time since 1996/97. Spurs’ revenue increased 21% to $ 459.3 million
arsenal slipped from nine to 11NS Overall, the financial consequences of the club’s absence from the Champions League are highlighted for the second year in a row. As a result, the number of Premier League teams in the top 10 this year has fallen from six in the previous year to five.
Sam Boor, Senior Manager in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, comments: “The revenue impact of participation and performance in UEFA club competitions is evident in London and the North West, with the rise of Liverpool, Manchester City and Spurs as they made the knockout stages of the Champions League is driven forward. Arsenal’s relative decline is a direct consequence of their second consecutive non-competitive season, a fate that could also hit Manchester United.
Around the world
In addition to the Premier League, clubs from the other “Big Five” football leagues – France’s Ligue 1, Spain’s La Liga, Germany’s Bundesliga and Italy’s Serie A, also in the top 20. The 2018/19 season saw impressive double-digit percentage growth in all revenue streams for Paris St. Germain when the club rose to fifth in the Money League, its highest position since 2014-15. The club achieved € 363.4 million.
Juventus wins 10. returnNS Place in this year’s Money League, as sales increased by 17% to € 459.7 million. The arrival of the talismanic striker Cristiano Ronaldowho has alone more Instagram followers than Real Madrid and FC Barcelona combined, increased the commercial appeal of Juventus. As a result, Juve saw a surge in commercial revenue, in part due to increased brand visibility in 2018/19. By signing the marquee player, the club also increased income from the sale of merchandise.
Boor added: “The composition of the top 20 remains relatively stable with only two newcomers in the Money League – Olympique Lyonnais in 17th place”NS and SSC Napoli in 20th placeNS – Both clubs made further progress in UEFA club competitions, benefiting from UEFA’s new and more lucrative distribution mechanism that went into effect in 2018/19. For the first time, each club in our top 20 achieved a turnover of over 200 million euros. “
The only non-“Big Five” participants in the top 30 were Ajax in 23rd place (€ 199.4 million) and Benfica in 24th placeNS (€ 197.6 million), FC Zenit Saint Petersburg 28NS (€ 180.4 million) and FC Porto 29NS (EUR 176.2 million), reflecting the significant impact that participation in UEFA club competitions has on revenue generation in these markets.
Over the past five years, the top 20 clubs’ combined television broadcast income has grown at an average annual growth rate of 11%, the largest of all sources of income. Whether the major football leagues have now reached a plateau in the value of broadcast rights is debatable, but broadcast revenue generation is ultimately beyond the control of any individual club. To achieve differentiated revenue growth going forward, clubs need to focus on maximizing the revenue streams on which they have the greatest impact. Your challenge is to do so at a time when the future landscape of football looks more unpredictable than ever.
Boor concluded: “The draw for the Champions League in the round of 16 for the 2019/20 season consists, like the top 20 of the Money League, only from teams from the ‘Big Five’ leagues in Europe. Key football stakeholders will understand the importance of maintaining the unpredictability of football results as a key to long-term and sustainable value. “
To check the full Deloitte Football Money League results, please visit: www.deloitte.co.uk/sportsbusinessgroup