While improved home results have allowed a small number of football clubs to minimize the damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic from the previous two football seasons, worse home results have further exacerbated the problem, as teams that did not respond positively to their liabilities, they have recorded additional losses. This results from a relevant research of the consulting company providing services based in the Netherlands, KPMG, comparing the average of the financial years 2019/20 and 2020/21 with the period 2018/19, selecting a sample of 20 clubs.
In particular, the eight champions of the same number of top European leagues and 12 other clubs with the highest reported total operating income: Besiktas, Ajax, Roma, Barcelona, Manchester United, Tottenham, Napoli, Walter, Wester, West , Milan, Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Dortmund, Bayern, Manchester City, Sevilla, Lille.
The findings reveal a significant reduction in revenue, an increase in the cost-to-staff ratio and huge losses for most clubs. “The 2018/19 season was indeed the last to be played in full before the pandemic, so it provides the most recent snapshot of a turbulent football market,” it said.
It is characteristic that, in the 2018/19 season, before the pandemic, these 20 clubs had revenues of 7.586 billion euros, of which Barcelona had the most, with 839 million euros. However, the total average operating income for the next two seasons was just € 6.692 billion, a decrease of 12% and an average annual reduction of € 45 million per club in the sample. Another Spanish team, Real Madrid, had the best performance in terms of operating income these two years, averaging 661 million euros, but recording a significant drop from the maximum of Barcelona in 2018/19.
It is worrying that, 18 out of 20 clubs recorded worse results on average in these two years, with the largest decrease of 32%, notes Besiktas, whose figures are also disappointing with the devaluation of the Turkish pound. . On the other hand, Sevilla and Lille managed to increase their income on average, by 15% and 40% respectively, due to improved sports results: Sevilla won the Europa League in 2019/20 and participated in the Champions League for one year later, while Lille did the “unthinkable” and won Ligue 1 in 2020/21.
The final results, after taxation, clearly show the deterioration of football activity in the last two years, as total net profits fell in the following two seasons, showing an additional average annual loss of 65 million euros per club. Alternatively, this means that in the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons, the 20 research clubs lost € 3.057 billion. Seventeen of the 20 clubs have the worst performance in the combined season 2019/20 and 2020/21. Barcelona has the worst picture, after making a net profit of 5 million euros in 2018/19, continued with losses of 97 million euros and 481 million euros the following season, having almost double the performance of the second worst team in the sample, Roma .
Based on this analysis, it is clear that, even at the top of the pyramid, the football industry was financially destroyed by the pandemic. The game is still severely affected by the pandemic and it is almost certain that the overall financial performance in the 2021/22 season will still be lower compared to pre-Covid-19 levels.
High revenue for City in 2020-21
For the 2020/21 season alone, Manchester City's total revenue of € 644.2 million is the highest in Europe, ahead of Real Madrid (€ 640.5 million) and Bayern Munich (€ 597.5 million). ), Barcelona (580.7 million euros), Manchester United (557.4) and Chelsea (494.8), according to available financial data, which does not include Liverpool and Paris Saint-Germain.
Moving to the cost side, staff spending remained relatively stable, averaging € 4.613 billion, down just 1% from 2018/19. As player contracts at this top level are guaranteed and are mostly multi-year, there is little scope for the sudden attempt to reduce these costs, although it should be noted that many players have decided to accept pay cuts in the 2019/20 season to help employers their. However, costs did not fall at the same rate as revenues, with the cost-to-staff ratio increasing by seven percentage points on average, from 67% to 74%.
The worst performance was recorded for Inter, who continued to invest by strengthening the team in search of a domestic title, Ajax, which suffered compared to the year in which it made a historic course in the UCL reaching the semifinals and Roma, which did not qualify for UCL, despite spending similar amounts to support the team. The proportions of all three groups increased by 19 percentage points.
In the opposite, there are Lille and Milan. Lille's increased revenue is the key factor in the 13 percentage point decline, while Milan's performance has improved, but the club has implemented a tighter wage budget, resulting in a three percentage point reduction. However, it is interesting to note that these two clubs had a very high ratio of staff costs to revenue in 2018/19, 112% and 86% respectively.
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