Premier league clubs paid a record £1.8bn to players and other staff during the 2012/13 season, according to the Guardian newspaper’s review of all the top flight clubs’ annual accounts.
The Guardian’s review is extensive and wholly revealing, with clubs shown to have earned a record £2.7bn combined income, but made an overall loss of £291m.
The stunning £1.8bn wage bill, up by 11% from the previous year, is predictably topped by Manchester City, who shelled out over five time more than Wigan, who bring up the rear of the list.
Twelve of the 20 Premier League clubs make a loss in 2012/13, with Liverpool, Aston Villa, Manchester City, Chelsea, and the now relegated QPR losing £50m or more.
Manchester United recorded the highest turnover in the 2012/13 season with £363m, while Wigan are at the other end of the spectrum at £56m.
While backroom staff are not normally among the top earners at a club, boardroom executives are now being paid increasingly large amounts, with the top director at nine of the twenty clubs receiving over £1m in wages for the year.
The highest earner in this category was Southampton’s executive chairman, Nicola Cortese, who raked in a cool £2.129m. The next highest paid was Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis, who pocketed £1.825m.
The figures are set to change for this season, with the Premier League’s last round of television deals (from 2010-13, worth £3.5bn) expiring last year, to be replaced with a new set of deals (from 2013-16, worth £5.5bn).
With Premier League clubs now attempting to adhere to the financial fair play rules, these new figures clearly show that players are the outright winners, with clubs still struggling to maintain an equilibrium when competing for signatures.
The sky-high wages of the top players continue to astound, with clubs bankrolled by wealthy investors still coming out trumps, with no end in sight for footballing inflation.
What do you think? Too much money in football, or do they deserve the fame and fortune? Let me know in the comments below…