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The real cost of the Premier League

22 May 2014

As the Barclays Premier League releases the broadcasting payments for clubs, Gocompare.com reveals how their earnings stack up to the British public.

This week, the Premier League released figures for the 2013/14 broadcasting commercial payments to clubs, sparking new debate into the costs involved in professional football.

Gocompare.com Money has compiled its own table that compares the amount paid to a club with the everyday finances of the people in the area the club is based, to show the payments in relative terms.

Click the image below to see the full, interactive table:


Overall, Premier League teams took home a collective £1.5 billion in broadcasting rights. This is the equivalent of the average energy bills of 1.2 million households and could wipe out the personal debt of over a quarter of a million people in the UK.

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Though Manchester City were the league champions this year, it was Liverpool that took home the biggest pay-out for broadcasting rights, being paid a staggering £97,554,336 for the season.

With the broadcast money Liverpool FC were paid for coming second, the Reds could have bought 1,069 houses in the city, or paid the annual salary of 3,887 fans. The payments mean that Liverpool FC could pay the annual energy bills of 77,179 households, more than one and a half times the capacity of Anfield, which is 45,362. 

Relegated Cardiff City took home around £62 million. In Cardiff, they could've snapped up 422 houses at an average price of £147,105 each. Though impressive, it pales in comparison to their derby rivals Swansea City, who could've picked up 699 homes in their area, where the average property value is £106,011.

Ninth place Stoke City could buy the most property in their hometown, with their pay-out of £76 million stretching to buy 1,082 homes, at an average value of £69,910. Conversely, it was Chelsea FC that would be able to buy the least real estate in their native area as their £94 million payment would only pocket them 75 properties in the borough of Chelsea.

Gocompare.com has created an interactive app that allows Premier League football fans to compare their annual earnings, house price and heating bills to what their team earned in broadcasting rights in the 2013/2014 season. 

Matt Sanders from Gocompare.com Money commented: "Our revised premier league table really puts football spending into perspective when compared to everyday life. The idea that the lowest paid club is paid over two and a half thousand times the annual salary for the area from broadcasting rights alone, is pretty staggering.

"It's worth remembering that these are only the payments for the broadcast rights, and the full figures, which include merchandising, sponsorship and ticket sales, have yet to be released by the clubs, and will make the grand total significantly higher.

"With recent public outcry over the £90 price tag attached to the 2014 England football shirt, these figures will no doubt bring into question whether clubs are doing enough for their local area and whether football is delivering value for money for fans."


Notes to editors:

* Total amount paid to clubs from The Barclays Premier League for TV rights for the 2013/2014 season - this does not include other revenue streams such as tickets or merchandise sales.  Available online here; http://www.premierleague.com/en-gb/news/news/2013-14/may/premier-league-broadcasting-commercial-payments.html       

** The Ford Fiesta was the best-selling car of 2013 (source: http://www.theguardian.com/business/gallery/2014/jan/07/uk-best-selling-cars-2013-ford-fiesta#/?picture=426480060&index=0 )  - according to Ford.co.uk the on the road price for the Ford Fiesta is £9,995

*** Calculated using average house prices from the UK Land Registy's online tool at; http://www.landregistry.gov.uk/public/house-prices-and-sales/search-the-index#  - the housing area chosen was for the region that the club is based in / represents. A breakdown of information available on request

**** Using  2013 earnings by region figures from the Office for National Statistics for the area the club is based in/represents - available online at; http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/taxonomy/index.html?nscl=Earnings+by+Region#tab-data-tables . Further information available on request

***** UK average personal debt (excluding mortgage) was  £,6016 according to The Money Charity - source:  http://themoneycharity.org.uk/media/Debt-Stats-Full-January-2014.pdf

****** Average UK dual fuel energy bill £1,264 Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-24238708