Revealed: The crazy cash sums paid out to the elite teams in the Champions League
Manchester City collected a whopping €83.853m from their run to last season’s Champions League semi-finals, ensuring they earned more from the competition than any other club in Europe.
The figures released by UEFA reveal City’s last four appearance earned them a windfall that eclipsed that of winners Real Madrid, with the cash generated, in part, by the huge TV deal BT Sport signed to cover the Champions League.
City’s incredible cash haul is put into perspective by the money handed to their local rivals Manchester United, who crashed out in the group stages under the guidance of boss Louis van Gaal and ended up with just €38.1m as a result.
Chelsea received a figure just shy of €70m, with their absence from any European competition this season confirming that the Stamford Bridge club are set for a huge dip in income when they file their next financial report.
That may be compensated by a recently signed sponsorship deal with Nike, which is due to kick in for Chelsea at the start of next season.
Arsenal also enjoyed a bumper harvest of cash following their run to the last-16 of the Champions League last season, with the Gunners collecting €53.4m from the UEFA prize pot.
English clubs will continue to benefit from the massive BT Sport deal for the next couple of seasons, but there is concern among UEFA officials over the poor viewing figures being served up by the broadcaster in the UK.
BT Sport now has an exclusive deal for Champions League coverage and there are no matches being broadcast on terrestrial TV in Britain, which has sparked suggestions that the difficulty in viewing the games has contributed to a downturn in interest in the competition.
The absence of Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea from this season’s Champions League has not helped the UK viewing figures, but there are suggestions that UEFA may encourage a terrestrial TV package to be included in the next round of negotiation, which could dilute BT Sport’s willingness to invest at a similar level moving forward.