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How do football teams make money

Football is one of the biggest sports in the world, and this is reflected in the amount of money that goes into the game. In Europe alone, professional association football is estimated to be worth around $25 billion USD, and the market only seems to be growing. One big question for many who aren’t in the know is how any teams are able to make the amounts of money they routinely trade with. It’s not always clear where the money comes from. 

Today, we’re going to look at a few of the key ways that football clubs make money—from merchandising to sponsorship and everything in between. Let’s get started. 

  1. Broadcasting rights 

One of the main ways that most big clubs make money is via selling broadcasting rights of their matches. Virtually anywhere in the world, football is a hugely popular sport. Around 3.5 billion people are estimated to watch football around the world—not all of them can do so at the grounds. 

So, most of the time, people view football games on television. Teams are able to sell the rights to broadcast those games to the television networks in lucrative partnerships. 

Football games are watched by huge numbers of people—the English Premier League, for example, has a potential reach of around 4.7 billion people. That’s huge revenue for whomever broadcasts it. 

So, selling the rights to televise matches is one of the main ways that football teams make money. 

  1. Sponsorship 

If you’ve ever watched a football game, you’ve doubtless noticed that teams will have a prominent corporate logo, usually on the front of their kit. More often that not these are the logos of famous UK betting companies and this is from a company which has sponsored the particular team. The sponsorship will go further than this, often with players endorsing products and services. 

All of this, naturally, is in exchange for a hefty fee. The biggest teams naturally have the largest sponsors, who see it as a massive advertising opportunity. But sponsorship is a viable method at virtually any level of football, with sponsorships of any and all sizes available.

This is key to a football team’s success. 

  1. Merchandising 

If you’ve ever bought a piece of kit from an official shop of your favourite team, or a plush toy with the team’s colours, or anything like that, then you are part of how the teams make their money. This is called merchandising. 

The team sells products associated with them, whether in their own stores or through third party retailers. The market for this is huge, the global licensed market sitting at around $26 billion USD. For the biggest teams, they can make money selling their merchandise all over the world to their global fanbase. 

Everyone you see at a game wearing the team’s shirt or kit has helped to fund the team! 

  1. The transfer market 

The clearest insight the rest of us have into how much money is in the big football leagues is during transfer windows. Players are sold between teams for tens of millions of pounds, sometimes hundreds of millions, as this is some of the most valuable talent in the world. Teams are paying to have the best players on their side. 

But the other thing is that valuable players are also a good way for a team to make money. They could get a player onboard for a few seasons, who plays better than they had before, and sell them on for a considerable profit on what they acquired them for. 

When Neymar was transferred from Barcelona to PSG, the transfer fee was an enormous £198 million. This is a really staggering amount, and again just goes to show how much money there is in the beautiful game. 

With some savvy investing, teams can make huge money on transfer markets. 

  1. Ticket sales 

Of course, we can’t leave out the traditional income model, though: ticket sales! Ticket sales are still integral to the sport and to teams making money, and this is partly why it has become more and more expensive to attend the big games. As big-name players sell for more and more, more money is needed. 

Ticket sales will always be important to how teams make money, however much money they make on the global stage through transfers and merchandising. Ticket sales help pay for maintenance on stadiums and for staff salaries and benefits. 

So, plainly, football clubs are not short on ways of making large amounts of money. With so much interest in the sport, they could make up the lion’s share of their profits from broadcasting rights and ticket sales alone. When combined with big name sponsors and merchandising, it’s easy to see why football is one of the biggest sports industries in the world. You can’t move for ways to make money!

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