Blues rise one place to sixth, Real Madrid reclaim top spot

Premier League clubs dominate the financial pull in world football, making up nine of the twenty most valuable clubs in the world, according to new figures released.

The annual list, which is compiled by Forbes magazine, shows that Real Madrid once again reclaims the spot of the world’s most valuable club – currently worth an eye-watering $4.24bn (£3.38bn) – after a two-year hiatus away from the top spot.

The La Liga club earned $100m alone by winning its third consecutive Champions League in 2018, with Los Blancos also on the verge of signing the most lucrative kit deal in football history – a 12-year deal worth $1.8bn with current kit manufacturer Adidas.

Real Madrid, who acquired Eden Hazard for £130m from Chelsea this summer, is once again the world’s most valuable football club (Photo – Sky Sports)

Fierce rivals FC Barcelona come in second in the list, with the Catalan side valued at $4bn (£3.19bn). Manchester United, despite being knocked off the top spot, still easily remains England’s most valuable club, coming in third behind the Clasico sides with a worth of $3.18bn (£3.03bn).

Bayern Munich and Manchester City make up the final two spots in the top five, holding the same positions that they did from last year, with both clubs being valued at $3bn (£2.39bn) and $2.69bn (£2.15bn) respectively.

As for Chelsea, where are they do you ask?

Well, Roman Abramovich’s side rises one place this year from seventh to sixth, with the Blues’ valuation currently at a very respectable $2.6bn (£2.07bn).

Chelsea’s placing means that the club once again sees themselves inside the top for the fifteenth consecutive year since the American business magazine started creating the list back in 2004 – which is also the only time that the club has not made the top ten (13th).

Chelsea – the sixth richest club in world football – celebrating winning the UEFA Europa League for a second time (Photo – i)

The other four clubs to make up the top ten include Arsenal ($2.3bn, £1.83bn), Liverpool ($2.18bn, £1.74bn), Tottenham Hotspur $1.62 (£1.29bn) & Juventus ($1.51, £1.2bn).

Forbes’ 2019 list of most valuable football clubs

1. Real Madrid – $4.24bn (£3.38bn)
2. Barcelona – $4bn (£3.19bn)
3. Manchester United – $3.8bn (£3.03bn)
4. Bayern Munich – $3bn (£2.39bn)
5. Manchester City – $2.69bn (£2.15bn)
6. Chelsea – $2.6bn (£2.07bn)
7. Arsenal – $2.3bn (£1.83bn)
8. Liverpool – $2.18bn (£1.74bn)
9. Tottenham Hotspur $1.62 (£1.29bn)
10. Juventus $1.51 (£1.2bn)
11. Paris Saint-Germain $1.09bn (£870m)
12. Atletico Madrid $953m (£760m)
13. Borussia Dortmund $896m (£714m)
14. Schalke $683m (£545m)
15. Inter Milan $672m (£536m)
16. Roma $622m (£496m)
17. West Ham $616m (£491m)
18. AC Milan $583m (£465m)
19. Everton $476m (£379m)
20. Newcastle United $381m (£304m)

All the data that is listed in this article has been compiled by Forbes from clubs’ own annual reports, Deloitte’s ‘Football Money League’ reports and the Swiss Ramble website.

The results show that the richest clubs are getting even richer, with the value of the top 20 clubs rising by an average of 3.4% from last year.

With the Premier League dominating the list with being represented by nine of the twenty clubs, this has started to give all major European clubs something to think of, especially when the idea of a European Super League is still on the table.

The ‘ESL’, where all the elite European clubs will clamour to have the same commercial strength as the Premier League and its clubs… That is some food for thought.

As of right now, the three major factors (examples of each included) as to why the richest clubs are getting even richer are the following…


Examples of recent ‘mega’ deals include:

• Real Madrid’s kit deal with Adidas ($1.8bn over 12 years)
• Barcelona’s shirt sponsorship deal with Rakuten worth $246m
• Juventus announcing a kit-deal extension with Adidas worth $457m over eight years.


A huge increase in money being spent on acquiring the rights to all the elite football tournaments around the world is starting to show – most notably in the UEFA Champions League, the biggest club tournament in the European game.

The average three-year deal that is agreed with UEFA is usually around $100m a year, with the prize pool for this season reaching a record high of $2.28 billion, 30% more than the previous year.


Television payouts are also going up for domestic leagues and international packages. The Premier League’s domestic and international broadcast rights for the next three-year cycle will be up to a combined 8%, according to recent reports. This includes streaming deals that come into effect this season from Amazon.

Lucrative domestic broadcast deals – beaming out the Premier League across the world – help the finances of the clubs within the league tremendously.

With all these factors taken into consideration, the increase in cash to teams is why earnings for football players and football managers have been steadily climbing year-on-year.

As for the next way we can see clubs making their money – don’t be surprised if it comes through stadium naming rights.

It’s raining money right now for the world’s most valuable football teams. Now excuse me as I go to find Scrooge McDuck so I can dive into his money vault…

Terry Sazio

What are your thoughts on Chelsea’s placing in the ‘richest club’ list? Let us know via our official Twitter and via Terry’s personal Twitter as well.