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Bobby McMahon

Bobby McMahon

You can see me on Soccer Central most Mondays and Thursdays on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada. I write a regular column for Forbes.com and Soccerly.com and frequently guest on various podcasts and radio shows.


UEFA Champions League – The Four Rules To Follow To Hit The Financial Jackpot

Written by on September 17, 2013 | 3 Comments »
Posted in Money Game, UEFA Champions League

Last season UEFA distributed $1.2B to the 32 teams that made it to the group stage of the Champions League. Despite winning the competition Bayern Munich was not the biggest financial winner.

While Bayern pocketed $73M and runners up Borussia Dortmund just slightly less at $72M. Juventus of Italy only made it to the quarter final stage but walked away with close to $87M. The other Italian club, AC Milan, was knocked out in the round of 16 but they….to read more please click on the link.

3 responses to “UEFA Champions League – The Four Rules To Follow To Hit The Financial Jackpot”

  1. John Bladen says:

    No doubt some will say that the clubs (and leagues) that play to the biggest and highest revenue audiences should be rewarded for same, and that the reason the market pools skew the payout so much is because the big clubs bring the biggest revenues to UEFA.

    While that may be true (notwithstanding the fact that this is supposed to be a competition with prizes awarded according to results… try running the “market pool” argument in your next poker game to convince your opponents pots should be tripled when you win, but halved when you lose owing to your stature in the game…), major competitions are supposed to “lift the game” as a whole. It’s hard to see how competing in CL helps make Bate Borisov or Steau Bucharest any more able to play at an elite level when they earn so little from the competition. Arguably, it extends the financial gap between competing clubs (outside the R16 qualifiers anyway), as those who “make it” are virtually guaranteed 25-30m (on rare occasions, a small pool R16 qualifier has earned less than $20m).

    So rather than lifting all boats, CL finances appear deliberately structured to keep the big clubs where they are by compounding their already overwhelming financial advantage through the market pool calculation.

    All is not lost for small clubs, though. While Bate or Steau might not get to the $20m level, the relatively small payouts they get still give them a tremendous advantage over their own domestic rivals.

  2. Ed Gomes says:

    JB, the Bate’s of the world can gain substantially even without the huge payout.
    If you take teams like Porto and Benfica in Portugal. The CL gives them the clout to bring in great talent that allows them to remain competitive on the field and then sell that talent to bring in more talent. Portugal and its league is too small to be relevant TV or stadium revenue wise, but Benfica still managed to crack the Top 20 in revenue. A great accomplishment, that wouldn’t be able to happen without the Champions League.
    Let me add, due to Porto, Benfica and to some extent Braga’s success in European futebol, it has raised Portugal’s coefficient. Portugal now has 2 automatic group stage (pot 1) clubs and 1 playoff qualifier. It’s passed France and Italy is within site. No small feat for such a small country.

    By the way, the “big boys” deserve more money since they bring in the most amount of money. Go take a look at attendance totals. I also think that Man United tends to draw more viewers than Bate.

  3. John Bladen says:

    Ed, if all the major clubs opted out (or just crashed out before R16) I think it would affect viewership dramatically. But how much did Man Utd’s failure to reach R16 a couple of years ago affect the net revenue of CL? Little if any, I would say. Despite such a humbling exit early on, they still took home a significant amount of prize money… for failing. As I recall, they earned more than one of the quarterfinalists did in CL payouts…

    I have no objection to a “market pool” calculation, I just don’t believe the interests of football as a whole are served if the prize money is distributed so heavily based on what amounts to “domestic revenue generation”. It is a competition, after all…

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