Manchester United may not be on top of the Premier League
table right now, but in purely commercial terms, the team from the North West of England is once again on top of the world. Thanks to a 33 percent revenue increase in the 2015/16 season, the 20-time English league champions leapfrogged Barcelona and Real Madrid to the top of Deloitte’s Football Money League 2017
. Manchester United earned $736 million over the course of the past season, largely thanks to the club’s appeal as a global sports brand. The arrivals of Paul Pogba, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and charismatic manager José Mourinho in the past summer will likely help United to make even more money off the football pitch, even if it looks like they won’t be competing for the Premier League title this season.
In its annual ranking, published for the twentieth time this year, Deloitte ranks the largest football clubs around the world in terms of (non-transfer) revenues including matchday revenue (mostly ticket sales), revenue from broadcasting rights as well as revenue from other commercial activities (e.g. sponsorship deals, merchandising).
Interestingly, Manchester United also topped the Money League table when it was first published in 1996/97. Back then, the club’s revenue amounted to roughly $110m, illustrating how vastly the financial landscape of professional football (or soccer) has changed since the turn of the millennium.