Chelsea on top of the salary table as wages rise at Stamford Bridge

Diego Costa, Chelsea v Crystal Palace, August 2015
Image: Diego Costa was one of the arrivals who caused Chelsea's wage bill to rise

Chelsea have returned to the top of at least one Premier League table after annual figures revealed they overtook both Manchester clubs in terms of salaries paid to players last season.

The 2014-15 figures, which have been made available on Companies House, show Chelsea are the biggest payers in the top flight having lost that position in the 2011-12 season.

The club, owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, reported a total wage bill for last season of £215.6m, up £25m.

The salary bill for their leading rivals last season saw Manchester United's at £203m, Manchester City's at £193.5m and Arsenal paying out £192.2m on wages. Both Manchester clubs reported a drop in overall wages last season.

Chelsea announced in November the club had made a net loss of £23.1m on turnover of £314.3m - down £5.1m - but said they were well within the boundaries for complying with UEFA's financial fair play regulations.

Image: Roman Abramovich changed the course of Chelsea's history in 2003

The full annual figures reveal, however, that the club made a £42m profit in the transfer market through selling Romelu Lukaku, Andre Schurrle and Ryan Bertrand while bringing in Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa. The club made a £65m transfer profit in the 2013-14 season.

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The accounts also show that Abramovich injected £46.7m via the club's parent company and £57.1m the previous year. The accounts state: "However... part of the debt has been converted into equity during the year via the allotment of ordinary shares."

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