Barcelona top money league as Man Utd slide

Spanish giants soar as Champions League absence hits Old Trafford coffers

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi
(Image credit: (Giuseppe Cacace/AFP via Getty Images))

Barcelona have topped football’s rich list for the first time as former leader Manchester United suffered a costly slide down the list of football's highest earning clubs.

With revenues growing by more than a fifth to £741m in the 2018-19 season, the Spanish giants overtook bitter rivals Real Madrid, who raked in £667m.

Deloitte, which compiles the list, expects Barcelona to remain number one in next year's standings. Analysts say the Catalan club is set to achieve its stated ambition to be the first to generate revenue of over one billion euros in years to come.

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Meanwhile, Sky News says that Manchester United, who came in third on £627m, now seriously risk losing their prized position as the Premier League's top earning club for the first time after failing to qualify for the Champions League.

Forecasted revenue for 2019-20 is somewhere between £560-£580m, partly because of the European failure. Deloitte told the BBC those figures “would likely see the Red Devils fall to their lowest ever Money League position in next year's edition”.

“This could also put the club at risk of losing its position as the Premier League's highest revenue generating club for the first time in Money League history,” Deloitte added.

Meanwhile, Tottenham achieved its highest-ever position of eighth as it increased revenue 21% to £459.3m. The club is now generating more money than any other club in London, with Chelsea ninth overall and Arsenal now outside the top 10 after going consecutive seasons without qualifying for the Champions League.

Dan Jones, partner in the sports business group at Deloitte, remarked that: “Growth in the football industry continues to outpace that in other sectors, and the top 20 money league clubs are on track to generate over €10bn collectively in a single year in the near future.”

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