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Manchester United suffer annual loss as wage bill rockets to €440m

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Manchester United chief executive Richard Arnold. Photo: PA/Reuters

Manchester United chief executive Richard Arnold. Photo: PA/Reuters

Manchester United chief executive Richard Arnold. Photo: PA/Reuters

Manchester United have revealed a Premier League record wage bill of €440million (£384m) for last season, despite failing to qualify for the Champions League.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s return, plus the signings of Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane, contributed to the highest salary listed in a club’s accounts, more than the €440m by Manchester City from 2021.

Ronaldo wanted to leave in the summer and is on a 25pc reduction, along with other members of the squad, after they failed to finish in the top four.

United are counting the cost of last season’s failures, with €28m paid out following the dismissal of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and then Ralf Rangnick’s short spell as interim. Rangnick’s two-year deal as a consultant for United was cut short when he became Austria national manager.

“Clearly our on-pitch performance in finishing sixth in the Premier League last season fell short of our aims and expectations,” said Richard Arnold, United’s chief executive. “In response, we have made important and necessary changes, including new leadership for the men’s first team under Erik ten Hag and the strengthening of the playing squad during the summer transfer window.”

After years of making profit, United have recorded net losses for the second year, losing €132m (£115.5m) this time around. Premier League financial fair play rules allow for losses of €120 (£105m) over a three-year period but United are not expected to be under scrutiny as Covid losses and investment in other areas of the club are taken into consideration.

United also revealed they were entering the NFT market for fans to buy assets in the digital world. The products do not have a tangible form but can be bought and sold as property. 

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