London: Real Madrid may be trailing their arch-rivals Barcelona in La Liga but financially they still have the edge on their old foes after topping the table of the world’s 20 richest football clubs, compiled by accountants Deloitte.
Real finished top for the sixth straight year with Deloitte’s table for the 2009/10 season saying the Spanish giants had revenues of 438.6 million euros.
Barcelona remained second on 398.1 million euros while Manchester United, one of seven English clubs in the top 20, stayed third.
All the 20 clubs represented were from the “big five” European leagues, with Germany contributing four clubs, Italy four, Spain three and France two.
Real remained top despite a disappointing season, coming second in La Liga again and being knocked out of the Champions League in the last 16 by Lyon.
“In the coming years, particularly as UEFA’s financial fair play rules take effect, Real Madrid’s revenue prowess should, in theory, translate into a competitive advantage on the pitch,” said the report editor, Dan Jones.
Real’s revenues were boosted by the staging of the 2010 Champions League final at their Santiago Bernabeu stadium.
UEFA’s fair play rules are designed to force clubs taking part in European competitions to spend only what they earn rather than rely primarily on the patronage of wealthy owners such as Roman Abramovich (Chelsea) or Sheikh Mansour (Manchester City).
Deloitte Football Money League table 2009/10
1. Real Madrid: 438.6m euros
2. Barcelona: 398.1m euros
3. Man Utd: 349.8m euros
4. Bayern Munich: 323m euros
5. Arsenal: 274.1m euros
6. Chelsea: 255.9m euros
7. AC Milan: 235.8.m euros
8. Liverpool: 225.3m euros
9. Inter Milan 224.8m euros
10. Juventus: 205m euros