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Champions League A Clash Of Football's Financial Giants

Mon 17th Feb 2014 | Money & Finance

The UEFA Champions League Round of 16, kicking off on 18 February, will be a battle of the world’s highest earning clubs, according to the Sports Business Group at Deloitte. 

Figures from the latest Deloitte Football Money League show the tie featuring clubs with the highest combined revenues is Manchester City versus FC Barcelona, with a total of almost €800m.  

Dan Jones, Partner in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said: “FC Barcelona and Manchester City generate the second and sixth highest revenues in world club football. The pressure will be on to capitalise financially by progressing to the next stage of the competition. 

“Participating and progressing in the Champions League delivers significant revenue benefits in terms of UEFA distributions and matchday revenue.  Success on the pitch can also translate into commercial uplifts for the clubs. 

“Last year, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund made around €55m each in UEFA distributions alone by reaching the final of the competition. Each English club in the R16 has already guaranteed themselves at least €25m from UEFA.”

Austin Houlihan, Senior Manager in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, added: “A club’s performance in the Champions League can have a significant impact on its Money League ranking. 

“Barca will look for a successful run in the Champions League to close the gap to the top ranked Money League club, Spanish rivals Real Madrid, and still have the opportunity to repeat their treble winning season of 2008/09. 

“Champions League participation has been a core part of Manchester City’s revenue growth which has propelled the club into the Money League top ten.  They will look to capitalise on reaching the knockout phase for the first time.”

“The combined 2012/13 revenues for the R16 clubs are around €4.4 billion and nearly all the R16 clubs recorded revenues of over €100m, demonstrating that success both on and off the pitch often go hand-in-hand.”


  • All the R16 clubs bar three – Olympiacos, FC Zenit and Bayer Leverkusen – feature in the top 20 of the Deloitte Football Money League;


  • Nine clubs in the R16 are in the Money League top 10, with just Juventus missing;


  • The Premier League and Bundesliga have the most clubs in the R16 with four each. The four Premier League clubs generated a total combined revenue of €1.3 billion in 2012/13;


  • On top of the guaranteed UEFA distribution that clubs have already secured from reaching the R16, further progress in the competition can deliver incremental prize money of up to €19.3m alone, should a club go on to win the competition.  In addition, further progress could potentially deliver a greater share of market pool payments, as well as additional matchday revenue and potential commercial revenue benefits.
Image: Action Images -REUTERS/Juan Medina

Posted by: Aaron Gourley 

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