Deloittes: Premier League the richest

The income for English football in the 1999/2000 season grew by £128m – up 13% – to £1,078m, but the firm also issued a stark warning about spiralling costs, in particular, wages.

‘While English professional football has generated massive income increases in the last decade, this has been more than matched by the clubs’ ability to spend it,’ said Deloittes head of sport Gerry Boon.

Overall operating costs rose by £188m, £127m of which represented the jump in clubs’ wages and salaries for its staff.

England’s 92 professional clubs made an overall operating loss – the financial result of the day to day running of the club before transfer fees and financing costs – of £59m.

Meanwhile, Premier League Clubs’ operating profits were £53m – the same level as 1995/96 despite incomes doubling in the period since then. Football League Clubs suffered record losses of £112m.

They generated 15% more income in 1999/2000, totalling £772m, with the remaining 72 Football League clubs generating 9% more income at a total of £306m.

‘The importance of promotion and relegation between divisions is more financially significant than ever. The biggest financial prize in English football is winning the Division One play-off final – a staggering £23m for one match,’ added Boon.

Some 16 clubs across the leagues have wage bills that exceed 100% of their turnover. The Football League’s problem is at its worst in Division One, as over a third of clubs (compared to 20% in the previous season) pay wages that exceed 100% of income as clubs with Premiership ambitions tend to spend beyond their means.

On the balance sheet, 57 clubs had net assets and 26 clubs had net liabilities. The top ten clubs were all Premier League, and accounted for 79% of football’s overall net assets of £661m.

Also in the survey, stadium expenditure passed the £1bn mark, to £1.07bn, since the Taylor report was completed in 1990.

England’s 92 professional football clubs continue to generate substantial tax receipts for government. Clubs paid an estimated £380m in tax (PAYE, National Insurance, VAT and corporation tax) – up 19% on 1998/99.


Man Utd tops Deloittes’ rich league

Deloitte & Touche sport website

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