The European Champions Report 2024


Welcome to the 8th edition of the European Champions Report, Football Benchmark’s annual publication spotlighting the domestic champions of Europe’s eight most prominent leagues in the 2022/23 season. In this edition, we delve into a comprehensive review and comparison of the most relevant business performance indicators among these clubs, offering insights into their future prospects. Unlike previous editions, this year, we broaden our perspective by providing insightful comparisons of the eight champions with selected peers, one for each country.

“The 2022/23 season witnessed a substantial growth in revenue for all champions, indicating positive signs of a full return to normalcy after the pandemic. Matchday revenues, heavily impacted by the pandemic in previous seasons, contributed significantly to the remarkable improvement, with the eight champions recording stadium income exceeding EUR 660m (17% of combined total operating revenues in 2022/23, compared to 12% recorded by the champions in 2021/22).”

Andrea Sartori
Founder and CEO, Football Benchmark

Key conclusions from the report:

Manchester City FC lead the pack in total operating revenue (EUR 826m) but, expanding the perspective outside of the eight champions, Real Madrid CF outperformed them with EUR 830m, emerging as the global leader in world football.

• SSC Napoli experienced the largest year-on-year percentage improvement in revenue (+79%), propelled by their most successful season in recent history.

• On the cost side, FC Barcelona registered the highest staff cost growth (+39% year-on-year), reaching EUR 639m. In contrast, Paris Saint-Germain FC reduced their staff costs to EUR 634m (-13% year-on-year), improving their staff-cost-to-revenue ratio from 109% to 79%, a significant reduction also needed in view of the introduction of the Squad Cost Ratio included in the new UEFA Financial Sustainability regulations.

On the profit side, FC Barcelona took the lead with record profits (+EUR 304m), propelled by extraordinary transactions. These included the sale of an additional 15% of future domestic TV rights to Sixth Street and the sale of 49% of Barça Studios to and Orpheus Media.

• Beside the Spanish champions, Manchester City FC, SSC Napoli, FC Bayern München, Feyenoord Rotterdam and SL Benfica also reported net profits, with the German champions achieving a positive bottom-line for an impressive 31st year in a row.

• Despite improvements, Paris Saint-Germain FC recorded the highest net loss among the reigning champions (-EUR 110m) for the second consecutive season. Galatasaray SK were the other domestic champion suffering a net loss (-EUR 49m).

• In addition to topping the revenue ranking among the reigning champions, Manchester City FC also retain the leading spot in squad market value (EUR 1,414m), according to Football Benchmark’s Player Valuation Tool as of January 2024. They are followed by Paris Saint-Germain FC at EUR 1,152m.