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Top 10 Insanely Rich Soccer Clubs

VO: Ashley Bowman WRITTEN BY: Adrian Sousa

Well, they certainly won’t be hurting for cash! Welcome to, and today, we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Most Insanely Rich Football Clubs!


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Top 10 Insanely Rich Soccer Clubs

Well, they certainly won’t be hurting for cash! Welcome to, and today, we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Most Insanely Rich Football Clubs!

For this list, we’ll looking at clubs that are financial powerhouses. We’ll be considering a few things here, including the spending power that each club has (aka how rich their owners are), as well as how much revenue they make from merchandise sales, TV deals, et cetera. And finally, given that most football clubs, even those that make the most money, operate while taking on debt, we’ll be looking past said debt in this case, and focusing solely on the money they bring in and the money that backs them. Hmm, clubs with the most debt? Could be a list for another day!

#10: Inter Milan

Though Inter Milan has gone through a bit of a roller-coaster of fortunes on the pitch since their treble-winning 2009-10 season, they started winning in the financial department in June of 2016. How? Well, the blue side of Milan was subject of a takeover bid by Chinese company Suning Sports Media, which as recently as 2018 was valued at $2.6 billion. Add in the team’s revenue of $302.5 million from 2017, and that translated to a whole lot of recruitment for their squad prior to the 2018-19 season - despite Financial Fair Play rules restricting them to a whole lot of loans.

#9: Liverpool FC

Sure, Liverpool has made some frivolous signings in the past, but nothing in comparison to some of their English Premier League rivals. However, once they were taken over by the $2.5 billion-valued Fenway Sports Group in 2010, they were able to make even MORE frivolous signings. Andy Carroll, anyone? We jest, Liverpool fans. In fact, with the ushering in of Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool’s revenues began to climb as well, thus leading to even better players coming to the club, and even higher transfer bills. Well, at least Liverpool’s return to the Champions League, coupled with their consistent ticket sales and excellent TV deals in the Premier League, helped them to amass $489.6 million in 2017 alone. Wow, that must have bought a lot of bowls of scouse.

#8: Juventus FC

The most successful club in the history of Italian football, Juventus is also a mainstay on the European stage, and if you haven’t guessed by now, that works wonders in the financial department. Owned by the majorly minted Agnelli family, who also have principle investments in major car companies such as Fiat and Ferrari, Juve have never shied away from spending money in the transfer market. In fact, Juventus’ shares climbed by 25% once mega-star Cristiano Ronaldo joined them in 2018 for $115 million, not including additional fees. Again thanks to Ronaldo, Juventus sold about $60 million in shirt sales. With all of this considered, it will be interesting to see if they can smash their record revenue of $470 million from 2017.

#7: FC Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich make a ton of money. Not only are they historically the most supported team in Germany, and the most successful, but the richest as well! In 2017, they raked in an astonishing revenue of $680 million from merchandise, match day sales, sponsorships and TV deals. Oh, and of course, being the team with the second-most amount of appearances in the UEFA Champions League doesn’t hurt either! Given that German teams are barred from outside investors taking over the club with their endless amounts of fortune, this makes Bayern Munich’s self-made riches even more impressive.

#6: FC Barcelona

Speaking of ownership, some Spanish clubs like Barcelona and their rivals Real Madrid operate in a similar manner to those in Germany, in which the club belongs to its “socios” or club members. These club members pay a membership fee in order to have the right to vote on matters regarding the governance of the club, like choosing a club president with bankable security. So of course, Barcelona doesn’t have a billionaire backing it. They do however make an incredible amount of money through sponsorship deals, global TV rights, merchandise sales, and tickets. So much, in fact, that Barcelona made a whopping $750 million in revenue in 2017. With Lionel Messi as the face of the club, they’ll be in the money for a long time.

#5: Chelsea FC

Remember the mid-2000s when football pundits and fans alike were blasting Chelsea for how much money they were spending on players, and attributing them with destroying football? Well, if only they knew how much more football and finances were going to mutate into the beasts that they are now! Roman Abramovich - who’s estimated to be worth $11.9 billion - bought Chelsea in June of 2003, and there has been a revolving door of managers and player personnel ever since. All of that spending has ensured that Chelsea is tied with Manchester United as the most successful English side since the Abramovich era began, winning 5 Premier League titles and a Champions League. The more success they’ve had, the more fans they’ve accrued worldwide, which helped them make over $490 million in revenue in 2017 alone.

#4: Real Madrid CF

Historically, Los Blancos were always associated with paying to have the best players in the world at their disposal. In the ‘60s, it was Ferenc Puskás and Alfredo di Stéfano. But once club president Florentino Pérez’s reign began, it was all about the “Galácticos.” Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham, Roberto Carlos, both of the Ronaldos, and many, many more. Some of the biggest, most well-known names in football have worn the white of Real Madrid and brought them tons of cash in the process thanks to merchandise sales and big-money sponsorship deals, which amounted to $777 million in revenue as recently as 2017. Given that they operate on the same ownership model as FC Barcelona, they don’t have big foreign investors. Looks like they’re doing fine without them, though!

#3: Manchester United FC

Speaking of successful English clubs, there’s no denying that Manchester United is exactly that, with the most league titles, second most FA Cup victories, and second most European Cup titles as well. In 2004, their success led to the gradual takeover of the club by American sports tycoon Malcolm Glazer, whose family business is estimated to be worth about $4.5 billion nowadays. Given that United is a household name, their fans are everywhere. Fans who will buy merchandise, pay exorbitant amounts of money to see them live, and whose support worldwide leads to lucrative TV deals. All of this combined lead to an eye-watering $780 million in revenue in 2017 alone. More revenue than any other club worldwide. But, there are some very minted owners out there, sort of like at…

#2: Manchester City FC

Prior to 2008, Manchester City fans were stuck in a long, forty year cycle of “just getting by.” But then, the Abu Dhabi United Group came along and purchased the club for $272 million, invested in the squad and facilities heavily, and the rest is history. The man at the top of the food chain in this case is Sheikh Mansour, who has an estimated net worth of $22 billion. And just as a side note: his family is estimated to have a fortune of at least $1 trillion dollars. Not bad. All of this investment lead to City’s first three Premier League titles, Champions League football, one FA Cup, three league cups, and a massive growth in popularity worldwide, which raked in $608 million for the blue side of Manchester.

Before we get to our most financially gifted club, here are a few honourable mentions.

Arsenal FC

2017 Revenue: $561.7 million

Tottenham Hotspur FC

2017 Revenue: $409.4 million

Borussia Dortmund

2017 Revenue: $382.9 million

#1: Paris Saint-Germain FC

PSG was a decent club in France before a massive takeover bid made them THE club in France. In 2011, Qatari Sports Investments, who are valued today at an estimated $338 billion, became the majority shareholders of the capital city club. From there, there has been a constant stream of investment in the squad, with the most notable signings being Brazilian starlet Neymar for $255 million, and World Cup winner Kylian Mbappé for $207 million. Clearly PSG has money, and aren’t afraid to spend it, as Neymar became the most expensive player of all time, and Mbappé the second. PSG’s money from their Qatari owners is seemingly endless, and the $560 million they made from all revenue streams in 2017 deepens their pockets even further.

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