Thursday 21 May 2020 5:25 pm

Manchester United revenue drops almost £30m due to Covid-19

Manchester United today said its revenue fell by almost £30m in the third quarter after the football season was brought to a halt due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The New York-listed football club reported total revenue of £123.7m in the three months to the end of March, down from £152.1m in the same period last year.

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The company withdrew its guidance for the full year as executive vice chairman Ed Woodward said the club was facing “one of the most extraordinary and testing periods” in its 142-year history.

Manchester United reported a drop of more than 50 per cent in broadcast revenue to just £26m, largely due to a £15m rebate owed to its broadcaster partners due to the postponement of fixtures.

The club said it expected its rebate to total £20m for the full 38-game season.

The Red Devils’ matchday revenue also dropped eight per cent to £29.1m over the quarter, while commercial revenue rose three per cent to £68.6m.

The decline prompted a 42 per cent rise in net debt to £429.1m, while the club swung to a pre-tax loss of £28.6m, compared to an £11.1m profit last year.

The figures come as clubs continue to lobby for the football season to restart amid concerns about the financial impact of the crisis.

Premier League players returned to training this week for the first time since the competition was put on hold on 13 March and clubs hope to restart matches next month behind closed doors.

Woodward said he hoped United could complete all of its outstanding matches by the end of August and start next season in time for it to end in May 2021 as scheduled.

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Manchester United, which is owned by the Glazer family, were in fifth place when the league was halted, chasing a lucrative Champions League spot.

The club has not played since their 5-0 Europa League victory over Austria’s LASK Linz behind closed doors on 12 March.