Europa League prize money: Manchester United triumph more lucrative than their Champions League campaign

Joe Hall
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Worth more than the Champions League? (Source: Getty)

Manchester United pocketed €14.7m (£12.7m) in prize money after winning the Europa League with a 2-0 win over Ajax in the final.

The Premier League giants secured the final winner's prize of €6.5m to add to the €8.2m they'd already earned from European football governing body Uefa.

Ajax, whose total wage bill is more than six times smaller their own, took home a runners-up prize of €3.5m.

The total financial impact of United's victory will extend far beyond prize money payments, however, with a place in next season's Champions League secured and Uefa TV payments from this season still to come.

A spot in Europe's elite competition sets Jose Mourinho's team up for a slice of the competition's significant TV income and means they avoid suffering a reduction in the value of their £75m-a-year Adidas kit deal.

Yet despite the riches on offer in the Champions League, United's Europa League triumph is likely to end up being more profitable than their exploits in last season’s Champions League.

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United made €38.1m from Europe’s elite competition last year, equivalent to £30m at the time. Meanwhile Liverpool made €37.8m for reaching the final of the Europa League.

And earlier this month United directors told investors they are expecting to make more from the Europa League than an English team would have done in an average season.

That’s primarily due to the relatively small number of English clubs who competed in the competition this season and — with the exception of United — their poor performance.

Uefa distributes its TV money payments based on two metrics; on how a team finished in last season’s domestic competition and how far they progressed in the Europa League.

As a cup winner — United qualified to the Europa League by winning last year’s FA Cup — the Red Devils are entitled to the biggest slice of the TV money set aside by Uefa for domestic performance.

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Meanwhile United only had to split the other half of the TV money with Southampton, rather than two other English teams as is usually common in the Europa League.

With Saints failing to reach the knockout stage and Tottenham only lasting one round after being relegated from the Champions League, United will have been entitled to 100 per cent of the TV money for the last four rounds of the competition.

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