Real Madrid remains Europe’s most valuable football club: studies

PARIS (AFP) – Real Madrid remain the most valuable football club in Europe despite the increasing dominance of the English Premier League, according to two analyst reports published on Thursday.

The Football Benchmark report, which ranks Europe’s top 32 clubs by value based on their annual accounts and squad values ​​assessment, puts Real at the top with a valuation of €3.184 billion ($3.4 billion).

Real, who meet Liverpool in the Champions League final on Saturday, have come out on top in the report for the fourth consecutive time.

That’s still less than their 2020 valuation, just before the pandemic, of almost €3.5bn, although the report indicates they were one of the few clubs to report a net profit in both seasons affected by the pandemic .

In a separate study, Forbes also put Real at the top, but with a valuation of $5.1 billion.

“Real Madrid have extended their lead at the top thanks to continued sporting and commercial success,” said Football Benchmark report author Andrea Sartori.

It said Real lost €84m due to no matchday revenue and fans being locked out due to the pandemic.

However, “Real made the best of the restrictions… and accelerated work on the Bernabeu. It will be ready in late 2022 or early 2023 and will certainly give them a massive revenue boost and potentially a competitive advantage.”

Manchester United (€2.9 billion) and Barcelona (€2.8 billion) completed the podium, with Bayern Munich fourth and Liverpool fifth (€2.556 billion).

Of the 32 most valuable clubs in the Football Benchmark study, only four (Ajax, Galatasaray, Porto and Benfica) are outside the five major European leagues of England, Spain, Germany, Italy and France.

Ten of the top 32 are English at a time when Premier League clubs dominate Europe.

“What drives English clubs to greater continental glory is their financial success,” reads the report.

“The Premier League’s total operating income of €5.1bn puts them comfortably at the top” while “what really sets them apart are highly lucrative transfer deals”.

Paris Saint-Germain has seen the highest overall value growth in the seven years since the first Football Benchmark report, up 153 percent to now more than two billion euros.

Most importantly, the report added, football is showing signs that the Covid-induced downturn is over.

“Last year’s financial results are still bearing the negative impact of COVID-19, while recent months have reflected solid signs of football returning to normal, particularly with spectators returning to stadiums and continued robust demand from sponsors and investors.”

The Forbes report places Barcelona second at $5.1 billion, behind Real and Manchester United at $4.6 billion.

Forbes ranked Real’s Champions League final opponents Liverpool fourth at a valuation of $4.45 billion.

Forbes stated that its team ratings “are enterprise values ​​(equity plus net debt) and include the economics of the team’s stadium (but exclude the value of the real estate itself), based on comparable transactions.”

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