Manchester United replace Real Madrid as richest club in the world in Deloitte Football Money League

Manchester United v Southampton - Premier League
United's revenue was the highest by any club in history (Source: Getty)

Manchester United have been named the world’s richest club after they ended Real Madrid’s 11-year stranglehold on top spot in Deloitte’s Football Money League.

United’s 2015-16 revenues of €689.0m (£515.3) – an all-time record for a football team – lifted them ahead of both Real and Barcelona for the first time since 2003-04.

Neighbours Manchester City climbed to a new high of fifth in the annual list – published today – while Leicester City gatecrashed the global top 20 for the first time following their historic Premier League title win.

Read more: United top rich list - but which club is the most valuable in the world?

Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United also ranked among the leading clubs last season, giving England twice as many representatives as any other country.

United, who flexed their financial muscle by signing midfielder Paul Pogba for a world record fee of £89m in the summer, comfortably overtook Real and Barca despite the Spanish teams also enjoying growth.


Data from Deloitte Football Money League 2017all figures for the 2015/16 season have been translated at the average exchange rate for the year ending 30 June 2016 (£1 = €1.3371).
1. Manchester United
England
Manchester United reclaimed No1 spot in the Football Money League after Real Madrid’s 11-year reign. Their total revenue was a record for any club and was fuelled by growing commercial income, notably a kit deal with Adidas, and a return to the Champions League.
  • Matchday Revenue: €137.5m (£102.8m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €187.7m (£140.4m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €363.8m (£272.1m)
Total Revenue: €689m (£515.3m)
2. FC Barcelona
Spain
Barcelona saw revenue grow 11 per cent last season – driven by improved commercial deals, higher average attendance and use if their Camp Nou stadium for non-football events – as they completed a domestic league and cup double and won Fifa’s Club World Cup.
  • Matchday Revenue: €121.4m (£90.8m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €202.7m (£151.6m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €296.1m (£221.4m)
Total Revenue: €620.2m (£463.8m)
3. Real Madrid
Spain
Real increased their earnings, breaking the €600m barrier for the first time, as they swept to an 11th European Cup. Yet they were toppled from the summit of the Football Money League after 11 years by Manchester United and also fell fractionally behind rivals Barcelona.
  • Matchday Revenue: €129.0m (£96.5m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €227.7m (£170.3m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €263.4m (£197.0m)
Total Revenue: €620.1m (£463.8m)
4. Bayern Munich
Germany
Bayern Munich claimed a fourth consecutive Bundesliga title, added the DFB-Pokal to complete a domestic double and reached the Champions League semi-finals. Off the field, a 25 increase in revenue lifted them to fourth in the Football Money League.
  • Matchday Revenue: €101.8m (£76.1m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €147.6m (£110.4m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €342.6m (£256.2m)
Total Revenue: €592.0m (£442.7m)
5. Manchester City
England
Manchester City overtook Paris Saint-Germain to reach a new high in the Football Money League and give England a second top-five outfit for the first time since 2011-12. Their fourth-place domestic finish was mitigated partly by a Champions League run to the semi-finals.
  • Matchday Revenue: €70.2m (£52.5m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €215.8m (£161.4m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €238.9m (£178.7m)
Total Revenue: €524.9m (£392.6m)
6. Paris Saint-Germain
France
The long-standing French champions slipped a place in the Football Money League despite increasing revenues by eight per cent. Those figures were helped by a run to the last eight of the Champions League and increased hospitality capacity at the Parc des Princes.
  • Matchday Revenue: €92.5m (£69.2m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €123.1m (£92.1m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €305.3m (£228.3m)
Total Revenue: €520.9m (£389.6m)
7. Arsenal
England
The Gunners held onto seventh place ahead of London rivals Chelsea as they finished second in the Premier League. For so long the highest-earning club from matchday revenue, Arsenal’s €133.6m finally came up short against Manchester United’s €137.5m last season.
  • Matchday Revenue: €133.6m (£99.9m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €192.0m (£143.6m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €142.9m (£106.9m)
Total Revenue: €468.5m (£350.4m)
8. Chelsea
England
The Blues may gone from winners to 10th in the English top-flight last term but they stayed eighth in the Football Money League. Revenue increased five per cent overall, with a new shirt sponsorship deal with Yokohama Tyres fuelling commercial growth.
  • Matchday Revenue: €93.2m (£69.7m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €191.1m (£142.9m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €163.1m (£122.0m)
Total Revenue: €447.4m (£334.6m)
9. Liverpool
England
The Reds’ three per cent revenue growth was the lowest in the Football Money League top 10, owing in part to the renovation of Anfield’s Main Stand restricting capacity. Commercial income remained strong despite an absence of Champions League football.
  • Matchday Revenue: €75.9m (£56.8m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €168.1m (£125.7m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €159.8m (£119.5m)
Total Revenue: €403.8m (£302.0m)
10. Juventus
Italy
A new kit deal with Adidas and an extension to their shirt sponsorship with Jeep swelled commercial income by almost €30m to €101.7m last season, as Juventus underlined their domestic dominance with a fifth successive Serie A title and a defence of the Coppa Italia.
  • Matchday Revenue: €43.7m (£32.6m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €195.7m (£146.4m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €101.7m (£76.1m)
Total Revenue: €341.1m (£255.1m)
11. Borussia Dortmund
Germany
Under new manager Thomas Tuchel, Dortmund recovered from a disappointing 2014-15 season to finish runners-up in the Bundesliga in 2016. The club posted record revenues but still find themselves even further away from the Football Money League top 10 than last year.
  • Matchday Revenue: €61.1m (£45.7m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €82.6m (£61.7m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €140.2m (£104.9m)
Total Revenue: €283.9m (£212.3m)
12. Tottenham Hotspur
England
Spurs grew their revenue by nine per cent last season but remain in 12th place in the Football Money League. With a third place Premier League finish, the North Londoners returned to the Champions League this season for the first time since 2011.
  • Matchday Revenue: €54.6m (£40.8m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €147.6m (£110.4m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €77.5m (£58.0m)
Total Revenue: €279.7m (£209.2m)
13. Atlético de Madrid
Spain
Atletico Madrid gained three places in the Football Money League after increasing revenues by 29 per cent — a rate of growth only bettered by Manchester United – as the club reached the Champions League final, where they suffered heartbreak against neighbours Real Madrid.
  • Matchday Revenue: €36.0m (£26.9m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €139.4m (£104.3m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €53.2m (£39.8m)
Total Revenue: €228.6m (£171.0m)
14. Schalke 04
Germany
Germany’s second best supported team increased revenues by two per cent but fell one place in the Football Money League following their absence from the Champions League. Winger Leroy Sane was sold for a club record £42.5m to Manchester City last summer.
  • Matchday Revenue: €51.2m (£38.3m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €75.0m (£56.1m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €98.3m (73.5m)
Total Revenue: €224.5m (£167.9m)
15. AS Roma
Italy
Italy’s second richest club, AS Roma are a non-mover in this year’s Football Money League, despite increasing revenues by 21 per cent. Following two runner-up finishes in Serie A, the Giallorossi took a step backwards last season, falling to third behind Juventus and Napoli.
  • Matchday Revenue: €28.4m (£21.2m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €154.0m (£115.2m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €35.8m (£26.8m)
Total Revenue: €218.2m (£163.2m)
16. AC Milan
Italy
AC Milan crossed the €200m mark for the first time last year but still fell two places in the Football Money League for a third year in a row. The Silvio Berlusconi-owned club has failed to qualify for European competition in that time.
  • Matchday Revenue: €25.9m (£19.4m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €88.0m (£65.8m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €100.8m (£75.4m)
Total Revenue: €214.7m (£160.6m)
17. Zenit St. Petersburg
Russia
Zenit St. Petersburg suffered their worst domestic season for six years, finishing third in last year’s Russian Premier League, yet they managed to increase revenues by 17 per cent and move up one place in the Football Money League.
  • Matchday Revenue: €10.3m (£7.7m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €40.4m (£30.3m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €145.8m (£109.0m)
Total Revenue: €196.5m (£147.0m)
18. West Ham United
England
The Hammers entered the Football Money League top 20 for the first time thanks to increasing matchday and commercial revenue – the latter fuelled by a sponsorship deal with Betway – and finishing seventh in the Premier League, their best performance since 2002.
  • Matchday Revenue: €36.0m (£26.9m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €115.9m (£86.7m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €40.4m (£30.2m)
Total Revenue: €192.3m (£143.8m)
19. Internazionale
Italy
Inter again struggled to get close to Serie A champions Juventus last season and missed out on the Champions League altogether. Nevertheless, they retained their position in the Football Money League after increasing revenues by nine per cent.
  • Matchday Revenue: €25.7m (£19.2m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €98.6m (£73.7m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €54.9m (£41.1m)
Total Revenue: €179.2m (£134.0m)
20. Leicester City
England
Leicester’s historic Premier League triumph last season has lifted the Foxes enter the Football Money League for the first time, after revenues rose by 25 per cent. That is set to continue to grow this season owing to their run in the Champions League.
  • Matchday Revenue: €15.4m (£11.5m)
  • Broadcasting Revenue: €126.6m (£94.7m)
  • Commercial Revenue: €30.1m (£22.5m)
Total Revenue: €172.1m (£128.7m)

Commercial strength elevates United

The Old Trafford club’s renowned commercial income swelled with the start of a new £75m-a-year kit deal with Adidas, while they also benefited from a return to the lucrative Champions League.

Their No1 spot is under threat from Real and Barca in next year’s list, however, despite the Premier League’s new £8.3bn television contracts guaranteeing a boost to broadcast revenues this season.

That lift is mitigated by United’s absence from the Champions League this term, Real and Barca’s pursuit of bigger commercial contracts and the falling value of sterling against the euro.

“We’re thinking it’s going to be a real tight-run thing between United, Real Madrid and Barcelona,” Dan Jones of Deloitte’s Sports Business Group told City A.M.

“There are three or four factors at work. One is domestic TV, where United will gain from the Premier League TV deals but Spain are doing good things as well.

“You’ve got Champions League performance, which is hugely important. Then you’ve got the commercial side, and that has been the real engine of growth for United over the last few years.

"They’ve done a tremendous job, but teams like Barcelona and Real Madrid are now out in the market and saying to sponsors ‘if United are worth that, we’re worth that’.

“I do think it’s going to be very close. The final factor that’s beyond Manchester United’s control is what happens with the exchange rate.”

World's 20 richest clubs by revenue stream (€)

Manchester City’s run to the Champions League semi-finals saw them grow revenue to €524.9m (£392.6m), overtake Paris Saint-Germain and give England a second club in the top five for the first time since 2011-12.

Leicester’s title triumph contributed to a 25 per cent increase in income to €172.1m (£128.7m), placing them just behind Italian giants Inter Milan.

All 20 clubs in the list increased revenues, which collectively reached a new high of €7.4bn.

Related: London has more top clubs than Spain or Germany

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