Football

Barcelona pull away from Real Madrid in Deloitte rich list

La Liga leaders Barcelona have chalked up a victory over rivals Real Madrid, after establishing a record gap between first and second place in the latest Deloitte Football Money League.

Barcelona topped the 2018/2019 earnings table with 840.8 million euros (S$1.26 billion), a record €83.5m ahead of Real (€757.3m), while Manchester United - the highest-placed British club in third, earned €711.5m.

German champions Bayern Munich were fourth on €660.1m.

Consulting firm Deloitte suggest United's grip on the No. 1 status among English clubs is under serious threat next year from English Premier League champions Manchester City and Champions League holders Liverpool.

Barcelona leading the pack is down to bringing merchandising and licensing activities in-house, according to Deloitte.

BARCELONA ADAPTING

"Barca are a clear example of a club adapting to changing market conditions, reducing the reliance on broadcast revenue and focusing on growing revenues within its control," Dan Jones, partner in the sports business group at Deloitte, told the Press Association news agency.

"The club's commercial operation generated €383.5m of revenue, which is more than the total revenue of the 12th-placed club in this year's Money League.

"With the club expecting further growth of €30m in commercial revenues and total revenue of almost €880m in 2019/20, we expect them to retain the top spot in next year's edition."

United's place as the No. 1 English club - a position they have held since the first Money League survey in 1996/97 - is in peril because they are forecasting reduced revenues of between £560m-580m (S$979.9m-1.01b) for 2019/20, partly because they failed to qualify for this season's Champions League.

City, who are sixth in the list (Liverpool are seventh), trail United by just under €101m.

"United have been the top English club since we started the Money League, but that could come under a bit of pressure when we do it in 2021," Jones said. "That will cover this season when Liverpool are having a tremendous season...so we think there's a possibility of United losing ... No. 1 position."

United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer insists that his club retain the power to compete at the top end of the transfer market despite the warning.

He said: "The most important thing for me is we get the results sorted and the performances on the pitch.

"But I know that we've got the resources, we've got the backing.

"If we need to go into the transfer market, we are still up there. So we're still in a good place." - AFP

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