Premier League club revenues rise as gap widens with rest of Europe’s top divisions

Premier League clubs reported revenue growth of 8% for the 2020-21 season, from £4.5 billion ($5.4 billion) to £4.9 billion (5. $9 billion).

The English top flight were the only one of Europe’s big five leagues – also including La Liga, Serie A, Bundesliga and Ligue 1 – to see an improvement in total operating profit, which rose from £49million ($59m) to £479m ($577). m).

Excluding the Premier League, these other four leagues recorded an increase in total operating losses for 2020-21 from €461m (£389m) to €901m (£761m). million pounds).

These figures were compiled by Deloitte’s Annual Review of Football Finance, which also found that the European football market’s combined revenue rose 10% to €27.6 billion (£23.3 billion). sterling) for the period between 2019-20 and 2020-21.

Deloitte says the increase is largely due to deferred broadcast revenue from the previous season and the success of Euro 2020, which was postponed for a year and took place in the summer of 2021.


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Tim Bridge, Sports Business Group Senior Partner at Deloitte, said: “Clubs across Europe have played a significant proportion of matches behind closed doors or with reduced capacity during the 2020-21 season, which has led to an almost complete loss of matchday revenue.

“It is testament to the resilience of the industry, the value generated from broadcast deals and the success of the Euros that the European football market has seen tenacious growth, in terms of revenue, over the year. elapsed.

“However, it is important not to overlook the loss-making position of many clubs. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally changed the financial management of European football, with leagues and clubs having to seek external investment and respond to a changing trend in transfer spending and club operations.

The report also revealed that Premier League club revenues are expected to reach £5.5bn for 2021-22, the season which has just ended.

Meanwhile, revenue for Bundesliga and La Liga clubs both fell by 6% for 2020-21, standing at €3 billion and €2.9 billion respectively.

Serie A clubs fared much better than their European counterparts, with overall revenue growth of 23% (€2.5 billion).

Revenue for Ligue 1 clubs rose just 1% for 2020-21, trailing the rest of the big five leagues at €1.6bn.

Bridge continued: “As the Premier League enters its fourth decade, it is further ahead of the competition than ever, having emerged from the pandemic without as large a rise in net debt as many might have expected. The stark reality, however, is that the league last broke even at a pre-tax level in the 2017-18 season, underscoring the critical need for strong governance and financial planning in leagues. years to come.

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While Premier League clubs’ net debt increased by just 4% (to £4.1bn), Championship clubs’ net debt increased by 32% (to £1.8bn ).

Combined Championship club revenue also fell from £78m to £600m in 2020-21, largely due to the majority of matches being played behind closed doors and a significant drop in revenue on game day.

Similarly, Championship club wage costs exceeded revenue for the fourth consecutive year, with a record wage-to-revenue ratio of 125%.

Bridge added: “The strides made to strengthen financial sustainability through new UEFA regulations and to professionalise women’s football will challenge clubs to break with tradition, potentially increasing profitability in a notoriously loss-making industry and creating a more inclusive environment for all. It’s an exciting time, but one you have to be prepared for.

(Photo: Getty Images)

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