After watching Manchester United’s performance in the run up to the FA Cup (they beat Preston 3-1, but some supporters say it was an abysmal performance), I was disgusted when the commentator Martin Keown made his bias very evident during the entire game. He was constantly on the band-wagon stating that the players are getting paid too much for their performance to slack. Yes, the world of football is extremely wealthy, we don’t need a prejudiced pundit to point it out. So, I decided to do a little research and find out, just how much money there really is in this business. Here’s a list of the richest football clubs in the World as put together by Deloitte.
1-Real Madrid – € 549.5m
Real being the Spanish word for Royal, this team really lives up to its name. It is the world’s richest club for the 10th year running and is worth $3.4 billion. The two most expensive transfer fees were also made by these European champions – Gareth Bale from Tottenham for £86 million and Christiano Ronaldo from Manchester United for £80 million. Another massive and expensive transfer is in the making as Real Madrid have agreed to sell Ronaldo back to his former team Manchester United. If this transfer does go through, the club will bring in a whopping £80 million! This for a player who has supposedly entered the ‘final stages of his career’ is an impressive sum, regardless.
2- Manchester United – €518m
Manchester United’s fan base spans the entire globe and has made it the 2nd richest football club in the world holding a value of $3.165 billion. The club’s manager Louis van Gaal is being heavily scrutinised for the team’s woeful performance all season. The Dutch manager who led Netherlands to 3rd place in the 2014 World Cup, however, remains unfazed as the team brought in 6 consecutive wins. He is determined to lead Man U to victory in the 2015 FA Cup.
3- Bayern Munich – €487.5m
The most successful club in German history, sitting at $1.23 billion, Bayern Munich is the world’s 3rd most expensive. In terms of amount of members, it is the biggest club in the world, with over 251,000 members. Furthermore, thanks to its sponsorship deals with Adidas, the club benefits from an average of $36 million a year, through till 2019.
4- Barcelona – €484.6m
A team that has never been relegated from top division, Barcelona unlike other clubs is owned by its supporters and has had an annual turnover of 484.6 million euros. One of the most celebrated football teams in the world, it has the largest social media following and is the most successful team in Spain having won 80 titles! A trail of players from this football school have won the record number of Ballon d’Or awards and it created history when its three youth players Messi, Iniesta, Xavi were selected for the best player awards in the 2010 FIFA Ballon d’Or awards.
5- Paris Saint Germain – €474.2m
In 2011, Paris Saint Germain was bought by a Qatari investment firm and this changed its entire game. The once empty seats in PSG’s home ground Parc des Princes, are now filled to the brim with supporters and their chants echo across the grounds. The president of this firm is intent on making PSG the world’s most valuable sports team in 5 years time. This will indeed be an impressive result as PSG is Europe’s youngest football club, it was only founded in 1970.
6- Manchester City – €414.4m
After an impressive turn of events, Manchester City’s 44 year decline came to a standstill. In fact the team, in 2011 won the FA Cup, in 2012 won the Premier League, in 2014 they won the league cup and a 2nd Premier League title. Its fan base is a supporter for an average of 21 years. In 2013, the club was operating at a loss of $18 million. In 2014, the operating income increased substantially to $118 million. Today the sum has sky-rocketed to £414.4 million.
7- Chelsea – €387.9m
Bringing in a revenue of £303.4 million, this club is our 7th on the list. Owned by Roman Abramvovich, since 2003, the club has gone through a series of makeovers to modernise and rebrand its image.
8- Arsenal – €359.3
Another English club, Arsenal is valued at having £1.3 billion. It mainly gets its money from gate tickets, tv, commercial deals and retail. At £7.2 million a year, Arsene Wenger is the most paid in the club.
9- Liverpool – €305.9m
Once Liverpool garnered the most success of any English team, but have been on a decline. But according to FIFA 15, it has the world’s best penalty takers and are still in the running to winning the FA Cup.
10- Juventus – €279.4m
The third oldest football club in Italy and the most successful in Italian history. Amongst its success it counts as being the first to winning all international trophies organised by EUFA. The majority of its income comes from broadcasting.