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Manchester City see record revenues for 2016-17 but wage bill soars

Wage bill up from £197m to £264m for 13-month period following Guardiola’s arrival as manager

Manchester City’s chief executive Ferran Soriano said: “We are committed to playing beautiful football and to win. Both elements are compatible, and the second is a consequence of the first.” Photograph: Getty Images

Manchester City posted record revenues of £473.4 million (€535m) in the 2016-17 financial year, with profits down from £20.5 million to £1.1 million, though the accounts cover a 13-month period rather than the usual 12 months.

While that extra month is also a mitigating factor, City’s wage bill looks to be responsible for much of the increased spend, having risen from £197.6 million to £264.1 million for the 13-month period following Pep Guardiola’s arrival as manager.

City are one of eight clubs comprising the City Football Group (CFG), and the annual report pointed to how this allows players to be developed and yield profit, as with Aaron Mooy. In the summer the Australian was sold by City for £8 million to Huddersfield Town, after being signed from sister club Melbourne City for an undisclosed fee.

The report said: “We are now seeing how our growing network of clubs can translate both into commercial opportunities for the group and development opportunities for players. As an example, we saw young Australian Aaron Mooy, formerly a Melbourne City player, join Huddersfield Town.”

City’s record £473.4 million revenue was a 21 per cent increase on the previous period’s figure of £392 million, with the extension to 13 months a one-off to synchronise the club with CFG’s other entities.

Wage bill

The added month of June adversely affected profits because income is reduced markedly outside the season. Sources indicated the profit would otherwise have been around £10 million.

The wage bill, at 55 per cent of turnover, is not at unmanageable levels, although the figures do not include the salaries of summer arrivals such as Benjamin Mendy, Kyle Walker and Danilo.

Ferran Soriano, the chief executive, echoed the sentiment of chairman Khaldoon al-Mubarak, who spoke in the summer of disappointment at Guardiola’s failure to claim a trophy in the manager’s first season in charge.

However, Soriano said: “We are committed to playing beautiful football and to win. Both elements are compatible and the second is a consequence of the first.

“I am convinced we will see further progress and silverware in the seasons to come.

“Over the last three seasons we have tackled another important and strategic challenge: to refresh and rejuvenate the squad that were champions in 2012 and 2014. We believe we have planned and executed well, signing young, talented players that can be the basis of our team for the years to come. Ederson, Stones, Mendy, Walker, Danilo, Gundogan, Bernardo Silva, De Bruyne, Sterling, Jesus and Sane have all joined the team.”

Profitable

Mubarak said: “For the third consecutive year our business is profitable and revenues continue to grow to record levels for the ninth successive season, pushing beyond £400 million and towards the £500 million mark. We also continue to operate with zero financial debt.

“Beyond Manchester, our global footprint continued to expand with our community engagement programmes reaching ever further afield, with expanded digital outreach and new global partnerships.” – Guardian