Real Madrid broke the Champions League record for prize money

Real Madrid broke the Champions League record for prize money

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29 May 2022
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Real Madrid won the Champions League for the first time in four years. And at that moment, while Marcelo was raising the cup, the club became much richer. In the 2021/22 season, Madrid will earn more than 130 million euros in prize money in the Champions League: the amount is more than half of all prize money in the Conference League, but still less than Mbappe’s signing bonus (150 million euros, according to the BBC).

How much did Real Madrid earn and why is this a record?

Champions League prize money is growing almost every year, so in theory every new champion should set a record income. But this is not always the case: the winner of the Champions League is almost always the best in terms of income in the season, but not in history. Due to the multi-tiered system, teams that have a perfect tournament (winning the final and no defeats in the group) achieve maximum success, represent a large TV market, but do not share income with rivals from the country and perform consistently powerfully in the Champions League in order to raise the historical coefficient. Therefore, PSG (a large market without competitors), Real Madrid, Bayern and Barcelona (top 3 by historical coefficient) are the most adapted for the record in the Champions League. Their victories, or at least getting into the Champions League final, is an almost guaranteed new tournament record for prize money. The last one was put just by Bayern and PSG in the 2019/20 season. The Germans earned 125.5 million euros (4.4 were cut due to covid), PSG – 126.8 (also minus 4.4). And the following season, finalists Chelsea and Manchester City didn’t even break through the €120m in UEFA revenue. 

Now Real Madrid is the most profitable club in the world. But he’s only getting back to pre-covid finance

The final amount is the largest in history, even despite the covid deduction. One of the main reasons is Real Madrid’s first place in the odds table. True, if Madrid had simply bypassed Atlético in the 2020/21 Spanish Championship table, they would have earned even more – 138 million euros. 132.5 million is not a cosmic amount. Without the covid deduction, PSG earned €131.2m in the 2019/20 Champions League. So from the 2023/24 season, the record is very likely to be broken. This does not mean at all that this is the most successful financial year in history for Real Madrid. In the 2021/22 season, Real Madrid will definitely earn no less than 660 million euros (more than City and in general everyone in the world), but no more than Real Madrid 2018/19. Then they earned 757 million euros per year (144.8 million per matchday with an average attendance of 60 thousand people). Revenue from match days in the 2021/22 season is not yet known, but taking into account the attendance of 41,000, approximately 99 million euros can be predicted. In this case, Real Madrid will finally return to pre-pandemic income levels. In the top 20, only Manchester City have managed to do so so far. It seems that Real Madrid is now in the most comfortable financial situation. Revenues are returning to pre-pandemic levels, and expenses will be reduced – Bale’s departure (salary – 2.3 million euros per month), and Marcelo and Isco will free up money for the final reconstruction of the Santiago Bernabeu and the renewal of the squad.

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