A new report into the financing of football says it remains debatable whether broadcast revenues are finally beginning to plateau.
Deloitte’s Football Money League 2020 puts Barcelona in top position with record revenues of €841 million, making it the first club to break the €800 million barrier. Between them the 20 highest earning football clubs in the world generated a record €9.3 billion, an 11% increase on 2018.
Deloitte says individual clubs have been able to increase revenues to at multiples of their respective countries GDP growth, by simply participating in their country’s national league. However, there is evidence that kind of growth may about to become a thing of the past.
“International interest may continue to drive growth in the short- to medium-term, but unless there is a change in competitive dynamics, mature domestic markets will likely make it hard to achieve the double-digit growth rates of previous cycles,” says Deloitte.
Following the interest of telcos, such as BT and Deutsche Telekom in pay-TV rights, the next phase of entrants are waiting in the wings in the form of the FAANGs (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google) to drive future growth. Already Amazon has acquired a package of broadcast rights of the Premier League – it also has Champions League rights in Germany.
“With 2018/19 marking the start of a new UEFA rights revenue distribution cycle, the financial impact of competing in Europe’s premier club competition appears more notable than ever and a strong overall correlation between Money League ranking and on-pitch performance in that competition is likely to continue.”
Deloitte suggests the competitive dynamics of the market might lead clubs to go further with OTT offers.