Manchester United have announced a record profit for any quarter in their history, on Thursday. The Red Devils returned to the top of the Deloitte Football Money League for the first time since 2005 last month, and are on course to achieve record revenues this fiscal year despite their absence from the Champions League.
The total revenue earned for the fiscal second quarter, ending 31 December 2016, was £157.9m. It is an improvement of 18% on the same period in 2015. It only goes to show how good United have been operating on the commercial front.
The only glitch amidst this financial success is that their net debt rising by 27.1% due to the post-Brexit collapse of the pound. The club’s net debt has spiralled to £409.3m.
The improvement in form under José Mourinho has seen matchday earnings rising by 27% to £38.6m. The broadcasting revenue was up by 40.8% for the quarter to £52.5m. If United can maintain this figure, which is likely to happen, they will achieve the target of making record revenues of between £530m and £540m in the period from July 2016 to the end of June 2017.
Ed Woodward, the club’s Executive vice-chairman, has vowed to back Mourinho in the summer transfer market, as United are aiming to return among the European elites. He has confirmed that significant addition will be made to the United’s squad in the summer without making wholesale changes.
Woodward said, as quoted by the Times:
Are we happy with the roster at this point? Yes. I think there’s a happiness from the manager at this point, as you can tell in all his recent interviews.
In terms of where we are as a squad, I think there is always going to be continual improvement. I think we’re in that kind of environment now compared to where we were two or three years ago, where perhaps a little bit more churn was required from a playing squad perspective.
Interestingly, United have listed Bastian Schweinsteiger as a club asset worth £4.8m. Only four months back, United declared in their first-quarter financial figures that they had written his value off after Mourinho exiled him from the first-team squad. However, United are intent on selling the German midfielder in the summer.
On the transfer front, United will not entertain any attempt from Real Madrid to sign David De Gea. Madrid are thought to be considering making an offer in the region of €65m to lure the Spaniard to Bernabeu, but United are unwilling to sell.
Atletico Madrid’s Antoine Griezmann, who has a release clause of £85.5m, is at the top of Mourinho’s shopping list. Victor Lindelöf, the Benfica defender, and the Monaco midfielder, Tiemoué Bakayoko, are other major targets for United.