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Monday, July 15, 2024

UEFA Champions League Final Offers Big Payday in More Ways Than One

  • Real Madrid will face Borussia Dortmund on Saturday in London.
  • The winning club will earn $21.5 million.
Real Madrid - Vinicius Junior
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The top European club soccer competition will conclude in front of 90,000 fans in London on Saturday when Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund face off in the UEFA Champions League final at Wembley Stadium. By virtue of reaching the championship match, this year’s finalists have already locked in huge paydays, but there’s still even more on the line.

Saturday’s victorious club will earn $21.5 million, while the loser will take home $16.12 million. The winner will also seal the second available spot in the UEFA Super Cup, which annually features the winners of the Champions League and Europa League—this year won by Italian club Atalanta. Advancing to the Super Cup guarantees a $4.33 million prize, with an additional $1.08 million to the match’s winner.

Madrid is seeking its 15th Champions League trophy, while Dortmund is looking for its second. But both have already qualified for next season’s competition, as well as the 2025 FIFA Club World Cup. If they hadn’t, though, winning Saturday would have accomplished both of those feats. They’ll be guaranteed at least $19.35 million in prize money for the ’24–25 Champions League; the Club World Cup purse hasn’t been released.

Could U.S. Host in the Future?

Like the Super Bowl, cities bid to host the Champions League final each spring. Future hosts include Munich (2025) and Budapest (’26), with Milan seen as the favorite for ’27, pending upgrades at San Siro Stadium. 

Last year, UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin said that holding a Champions League final in the U.S. could be possible one day. This week, the leader of UEFA’s U.S. broadcast partner admitted that idea is still “routinely talked about.” 

Paramount will be paying a total of $1.5 billion until 2030 to continue showing Champions League matches Stateside, and CBS Sports president David Berson sees “tremendous upside” in opportunities like bringing games to the U.S. “I would not be surprised if over the course of these next six years you’ll see that in play,” Berson said on a press call previewing the final. “It’s something we’d welcome. I think it’s something UEFA would like.”

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