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Report reveals the finances of European football clubs

Thu 25th Feb 2010 | UEFA

A study commissioned by European football governing body UEFA has revealed that the total debt of the English Premier League clubs is more than all the other top clubs in the continent combined.

The European Club Footballing Landscape study revealed that the total debt of the top English clubs is €3.8bn (£3.4bn), 56% of the total across Europe.

It also reveals that Premier League assets of £3.8bn constitute 48% of total club wealth across Europe.

The European Club Footballing Landscape studied the 2007-08 accounts of all 732 clubs licensed by UEFA.

It found that the total debt of 18 Premier League clubs is about four times that of the next most indebted top-flight league, Spain's La Liga, which is €978m in debt. However, La Liga has assets of €2.5bn.

The report says most of the debt is linked to the takeovers of Manchester United, by the Glazer family, and Liverpool, by American businessmen George Gillett and Tom Hicks.

The report does not include the debts of Portsmouth or West Ham, because they were not granted UEFA licences that year owing to financial problems.

Michel Platini, UEFA president, is pushing for a system where clubs spending beyond their means will be prevented from playing in the Champions and Europa Leagues.

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