The financial strength of European soccer clubs has withered as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The top 20 clubs in Europe generated about $10 billion last year, down 12% from about $11.3 billion in 2018-2019, according to Deloitte’s “Money League” report.
The health crisis has hampered a large portion of the revenue streams clubs rely on. Drops in broadcast and matchday revenue are the main sources of financial decline.
Despite the losses, FC Barcelona retained its top position, generating the most revenue across European soccer clubs. However, the club’s financial hit was still drastic.
The Spanish club brought in about $870 million in 2020, a significant decrease from the record-setting $1 billion the year before. Real Madrid was just behind with approximately $869 million in revenue.
European soccer clubs will have missed out on over $2.4 billion in revenue by the end of the 2020-2021 season, the report estimates.
While the most popular clubs suffered significant losses, soccer clubs across Europe who don’t have the same stature will likely carry a heavier burden.
“There is no doubt that this is one of the most testing times the football industry has ever had to endure,” Deloitte Sports Business group partner Dan Jones said in a statement. “The final size of the financial impact of the pandemic on football will depend, in no small part, on the timing and scale of fans’ return.”