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Deloitte's annual publication of the richest sides in football sees a familiar Spanish duo stretch their advantage over England's finest in 2010-11

By Paul Macdonald | Deputy Editor

Deloitte’s annual report on European football revenues - known as the Football Money League - has been released, and Spanish giants Real Madrid and Barcelona have extended their advantage over the rest of Europe at the top of the 2010-11 list.

Real Madrid have collected top spot for the seventh consecutive season, while the remainder of the top six remains unchanged from 2009-10.

The list is compiled by gathering income streams from three key areas:
  • Matchday revenue, consisting of gate receipts and season tickets
  • Broadcast revenue, including both international and domestic TV contracts
  • Commercial revenue, notably from sponsorship and merchandising
Staggeringly, the Top 20 earned a combined €4.4 billion in the period measured, a figure which represents one quarter of the entire revenue accumulated in the European football market.

Without further ado, here is the list in full:

Last year: 1st

Real Madrid dominate the Money League for a seventh consecutive year, as improved performance on the pitch combined with continued commercial growth sees the Primera Division leaders record a revenue increase of 9.6% on their 2009-10 total. The most startling statistic of all, however, is how Madrid have exponentially enhanced their income in the past five years; from 2007, their total revenue has risen by almost 200m, and the club are projected to be the first to break the 500m barrier in next year's edition. Further on-field successes will only solidify Los Blancos' standing as European football's true financial superpower.

Last year: 2nd

Barcelona continue to trail their domestic rivals in terms of total revenue, but another trophy-laden campaign allowed the Catalan club to narrow the gap on Madrid, whilst simultaneously almost double their advantage over third-placed Manchester United, the revenue gap widening from 48.3m in 2009-10, to 83.7m in 2010-11. A revolutionary shirt sponsorship deal with the Qatar Foundation contributed to a significant rise in commercial income, and the ramifications of this arrangement will only truly impact Barca's revenue stream from next year's edition, meaning their position is set to strengthen further.

Last year: 3rd

Sir Alex Ferguson's side recaptured their Premier League title in 2010-11, and coupled with their impressive run to the Champions League final, remain the club with the most impressive revenue figures outside Spain's leading duo. Commercially, partnerships with Aon Corporation and shirt manufacturers Nike continue to bear fruit, with a 27% gain in this particular area. However, the continued duopoly of TV rights from Real Madrid and Barcelona in La Liga, in addition to their business acumen in other areas, means that Manchester United lost ground on their rivals, reflected in their steady incremental growth across the last five years when compared to the advancements of the big two.

Last year: 4th

The Bavarian giants remain in fourth spot but in comparative terms enjoyed a disappointing 2010-11, and their failure to win the Bundesliga, alongside their premature Champions League exit at the Round of 16, proved to be key contributors to an overall revenue decrease. Bayern's enviable commercial presence, however, rose by 3% across the period, while matchday receipts increased by a healthy 8% due to a revised pricing policy. In short, a return to form both domestically and in European competition would be sufficient for the German powerhouse to return to positive growth in 2011-12.

Last year: 5th

In their home currency Arsenal recorded a minor increase in revenue in 2010-11, but exchange rate fluctuations have influenced the 8.4% reduction in earnings in Euros. A sixth consecutive season without silverware has left the Gunners trailing in terms of both matchday and broadcasting revenue, and, significantly, their long-term contract with Emirates means that only 20% of their total income is derived through commercial means. It is in this area where the London club must develop their strategy, while sustained Champions League football remains an absolute necessity in order to maintain their fifth spot.

Last year: 6th

Similarly to Arsenal, Chelsea reported a rise in revenue in pounds sterling in 2010-11, but overall a 2.4% decline when translated to euros. The Blues were also able to markedly close the gap to their city rivals from 16.9m in 2009-10 to a mere 1.3m this year. Despite a lack of trophies in 2010-11, Chelsea's broadcast revenue represents their key driver, with reaching the quarter-finals of the Champions League ensuring additional income from Uefa. From a commercial and matchday revenue perspective, both of these strands of the business plateaued during the period in question, but remained consistent enough to ensure the club remain in sixth position.

Last year: 7th

Leading the Italian clubs that populate the Money League, AC Milan remain in seventh spot from 2009-10, and enjoyed a return to form in Serie A, claiming the Scudetto after Inter's extended period of dominance. Their overall revenue is down on the previous year, and a worrying statistic concludes that 46% of the Rossoneri's total earnings is derived from broadcast revenue. Their matchday takings are second lowest in the top 10, although their commercial income was boosted by a lucrative deal with Emirates. However, if Milan fail to secure progression beyond the Champions League Round of 16, their reliance on TV money means they are unlikely to progress up the list next year.

Last year: 9th

Inter are the first movers in the Money League from 2009-10, leapfrogging Liverpool into eighth position, despite exchange rate movements perpetuating a 6% drop in combined earnings. Like AC Milan, Inter's main revenue stream is accumulated from broadcast revenue, and indeed, 57% comes from this area - the second highest percentage (behind AS Roma) of any team in the top 20. As is a problem indicative of all Serie A teams, Inter must strategise to effectively utilise their brand in other areas if they are to remain competitive with the sides currently above them.

Last year: 8th

Liverpool are the only club in the top 10 not to have competed in the 2010-11 Champions League, their first season without the associated broadcast income from this competition since 2003-04, and as a result they slide into ninth position. The club were able to offset this shortfall, however, by securing one of the highest shirt sponsorship deals of any team in the top 20, worth up to 22m per season. Their Europa League run to the semi-finals limited the shortfall in broadcast revenue to just 12.4m down on 2009-10, but with no European football taking place at Anfield this season, the Reds will struggle to remain in the top 10 next year.

Last year: 16th

The unquestionable surprise package of the 2010-11 Money League, Schalke achieved an astonishing 45% increase in revenue, thanks in no small part to a swashbuckling trip to the Champions League semi-finals. Their broadcast revenue more than doubled as a result, propelling them into the top 10, but their commercial income is also a huge success, accounting for 45% of their total earnings and is due largely to their multi-purpose use of their state-of-the-art Veltins Arena. However, their failure to secure Champions League football again means their rise is likely to be short-lived for now.

Last year: 12th

Tottenham climb back above Premier League rivals Manchester City, as reaching the quarter-finals of the Champions League provided a healthy increase across all revenue streams and translated into a 24% rise on the previous year. The area to benefit most from on-pitch performance proved to be the broadcasting arm of the club's income, which recorded 61% growth. The capacity of White Hart Lane, which is only the 10th largest in England alone, currently restricts matchday receipts, but the proposed redevelopment plans will prove to be a main economic driver going forward.

Last year: 11th

Tottenham's European exploits edged Manchester City down to 12th position, despite their own revenue increasing by 11% across the 2010-11 period. However, City remain a team very much on the rise in all aspects; their commercial revenue has tripled over the past two seasons, while entry to the 2011-12 Champions League will unquestionably increase their broadcasting income in next year's edition. This, in turn, will positively impact matchday revenue, ensuring that City will be a genuine challenger to the top 10 positions not only next year, but in the seasons that follow.

Last year: 10th

The impact of successful progression through European competition is highlighted by Juventus' freefall down the Money League in recent years. The loss of income is palpable based on Champions League versus Europa League participation, with the club receiving just 1.8m from Uefa in 2010-11, in stark contrast to the 22.8m accumulated the season prior. Serie A's redesigned, collective broadcasting agreement has also negatively impacted Juve's earnings, and with no Uefa participation to generate income in the current season, their position is only likely to worsen in the 2011-12 Money League. Moving into their own stadium will certainly lead to significant increases in matchday revenue going forward, though, putting them ahead of all domestic rivals in this area.

Last year: 15th

Marseille, for the first time in seven years, are the highest-earning club in French football, usurping rivals Lyon in the process, and operating at a 6.6% increase in 2010-11. Reaching the Round of 16 of the Champions League is most responsible for this upturn, as commercial and matchday revenues remain relatively constant. OM's famous stadium, the Stade Velodrome, is undergoing redevelopment to increase capacity ahead of Euro 2016, and while building work will reduce attendances in the short term, the additional gate receipts will prove to be a profitable avenue of income in the future.

Last year: 14th

Roma leap three positions to 15th, with their Champions League exploits helping to increase broadcasting revenue by an impressive €25.5m, and ensure a general rise in earnings of 17%. Despite this, however, the club reported a disappointing decrease in matchday takings, as average attendances fell by 15% across the course of the season. Roma are looking to remedy this in the near future by moving to a new custom-built arena, but with no Champions League income to fall back on in 2011-12, the capital club may suffer a temporary setback in their total income.

Last year: N/A

From being on the brink of bankruptcy just over a decade ago, Borussia Dortmund make a successful return to the Money League after collecting the Bundesliga title, which heralded record earnings. Like other German sides, Dortmund's commercial revenue is their most beneficial prong of their business plan, with 57% of income generation borne from this area - the highest of any side in the top 20. Their continuously shrewd sponsorship arrangements, combined with the joint-highest average attendance and incoming Champions League riches, could see a substantial rise in next year's list for the German champions.

Last year: 14th

Lyon drop three places and not only have they lost ground on rivals Marseille, but the emergence of Paris Saint-Germain as a significant power in French football could threaten OL's position at the top of the domestic game. Once more, a failure to match the Champions League achievements of the season before sees the club's broadcasting revenue significantly fall. However like many others, Lyon have made provisions for a new stadium to maximise their matchday takings and commercial income that can be generated from a multi-purpose arena.

Last year: 13th

As you would expect, no income from European football in 2010-11 unsurprisingly sees Hamburg slide down the Money League. Commercial revenue remains a key driver, as a lack of continental action led to nine fewer home matches and a €7.5m decrease in matchday revenue as a result. However, as on-pitch success and the associated broadcasting benefits that are offered become ever-more crucial in the Money League, it seems that Hamburg will need to shake off their current difficulties in order to remain a part of the top 20 in seasons to come.

Last year: N/A

Valencia's financial problems across the past five years have been played out in the public domain, as a half-empty stadium and continued sale of talented players highlights their precarious plight. However, consistent qualification for the Champions League has ensured that, in terms of revenue generation at least, Los Che are moving in the right direction. Their position in the Money League, but one so far behind Spain's big two, only serves to further emphasise the disparity of earnings that currently plights the distribution of TV cash in La Liga.

Last year: N/A

Napoli make their debut in the Money League after enjoying their highest Serie A placing for over 20 years. Unlike established challengers such as AC Milan and Inter, the Partenopei benefited from the revised TV revenue arrangement in Italy, creating a huge 47% (18.6m) rise in broadcasting income. A new commercial agreement for 2011-12, plus Champions League qualification beyond the group stages, should ensure that Napoli not only remain in the top 20, but could rise up the list.