Deloitte report hails English football's 'most impressive' set of financial data
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 07/06/18 6:41am
English football's long financial boom shows no signs of slowing with the Premier League forging ahead of its European rivals last year, Deloitte has revealed.
According to the accountancy firm's 27th annual football finance review, the European market was worth £21.9billion in 2016/17, with the 'big five' leagues of England, France, Germany, Italy and Spain accounting for £12.6billion of that, a nine per cent rise on the previous season.
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But the Premier League's revenues rose by 25 per cent to hit a record £4.5billion. This was largely due to the huge uplift in broadcast income and it meant that all 20 clubs recorded an operating profit.
Collectively, the English top flight made 86 per cent more money than La Liga, its nearest rival.
Deloitte's football finance expert Dan Jones said: "The financial results of the class of 2016/17 are the most impressive we have ever seen.
"Just a decade ago, 60 per cent of Premier League clubs were making an operating loss whereas in the 2016/17 season, all clubs were profitable.
"In addition, and for the first time ever, Premier League clubs' revenues have grown at a faster rate than wages over a 10-year period."
Premier League clubs have been bringing in large sums of money for several years but the crucial difference now is that they are not spending it all on players. The crucial wages/revenue ratio fell to just 55 per cent last year, its lowest level for nearly 20 years.
In fact, one year after winning the title, Leicester recorded the league's highest-ever pre-tax profit of £92million.
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Championship clubs also made a record amount of cash, with turnover up 30 per cent to £720m. The key difference here, though, is that Championship clubs had a wages/revenue ratio of 99 per cent.
A large slice of that record turnover came from the parachute payments Aston Villa, Newcastle and Norwich received - £41m each. This was more than the total income of all bar one of their league rivals.
That, however, does not necessarily translate into financial health and Aston Villa's current difficulties are a stark reminder of the economic consequences of budgeting for a quick return to the Premier League but then failing to achieve that goal.