England’s most coveted football club, Manchester United, had a marvellous 2017 calendar year leading to them topping the Deloitte Football Money League. Their season began with defeating defending Premier League Champions Leicester City in the FA Community Shield. This title was the first of multiple trophies for the Red Devils. As the calendar officially turned to 2017, the club defeated Southampton in the EFL Cup Final at Wembley. Finally, they finished the campaign in style by defeating Eredivisie giants Ajax in the Europa League final which granted them Champions League qualification for the 2017-18 campaign. This victory was massive for United, as they did not finish in the top four in the Premier League for the second consecutive season.
For supporters of the club, it was very promising to see that manager Jose Mourinho was able to lead United to a strong first campaign. However, there is so much more to this club than their hardware.
The club had one of its most successful seasons financially over the past 10 years. While they did see a decrease in their revenue from the 2015-16 season, (£607 million) they still pulled in a ridiculous £581 million. This figure allowed United to land the top spot in the Deloitte Money League, beating out rivals Manchester City and Spanish giants Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.
United’s £581 million topped second-place Real Madrid by just £1.49 million. This figure is the smallest margin ever between the top two teams since tracking across Europe started in the 1997-98 season. Amazingly, £39 million of the club’s revenue simply came from winning the Europa League. If we were to subtract that £39 million from the club’s total, United would have finished third in the table.
An interesting figure to note is the percentage growth between United and other clubs in the league. Out of the top five teams in the league, (United, Real, Barcelona, Bayern, and Manchester City) they saw the least amount of growth from the previous season. This could be due to the fact that United had a larger revenue in the 2015-16 campaign. Their £607 million in revenue beat out second place Barcelona by about £60 million. It’s interesting to see how this margin changed over the course of the calendar year, especially when looking at the relationship between the Pound and Euro.
Amazingly, ten Premier League clubs finished within the top 20 of the league. To be honest, I don’t think this should come as a surprise. The Premier League has been able to create a stronger presence in the United States since NBC Sports acquired broadcasting rights to major matches. We have yet to see other leagues establish a major presence in the States, which is a market that opens so many doors and provides the Premier League with a significant market advantage.
Written By: Jake Meister