Manchester United have dethroned Real Madrid – who held top spot for 11 years – after accumulating a record revenue of 689m euros (£515m) during the 2015-16 term.
According to a report published by Deloitte, the 20-time English champions generated the most revenue of any football club in the world last season, thanks largely to a commercial earning growth of €100m.
Madrid have slipped to third place, behind Barcelona, who stay second. All three top clubs broke the €600m barrier for revenue last term.
Manchester City have climbed into the top five for the first time, behind fourth-place Bayern Munich, while Leicester City have broken into the top 20 for the first time following their Premier League title win and qualification for the Champions League.
The 20 highest-earning clubs in the world generated €7.4bn of revenue in 2015-16, an increase of 12 per cent on the previous year. The eight Premier League clubs in the top 20 generated close to half of that amount (€3.2bn).
Dan Jones, partner in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said Manchester United’s record revenues were achieved by “phenomenal commercial revenue growth”.
He added: “In recent years, their ability to secure commercial partnerships with value in excess of that achievable by their peers has been the crucial factor in enabling the club to regain their place at the top of the money league.
“That said, they’ll face strong competition from Barcelona and Real Madrid to retain the top spot in next year’s edition, due to the lack of Champions League football, the weakening of the pound against the euro and, over the longer term, as other clubs enter the commercial market demanding similar deals, using United as the precedent.”
See the rice list below:
Deloitte Football Money League Table
|Rank||+/-||Team||2015/16 Revenue (£m)||2014/15 Revenue (£m)|
|17||+1||Zenit St Petersburg||147||127.7|