The Doc’s Prescription - Money, Money, Money

Barcelona captain Eric Abidal lifts the UEFA Champions League trophy during the UEFA Champions League Final at Wembley Stadium, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 28, 2011. See PA story SOCCER Final. Photo credit should read: Nick Potts/PA Wire.
Barcelona captain Eric Abidal lifts the UEFA Champions League trophy during the UEFA Champions League Final at Wembley Stadium, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 28, 2011. See PA story SOCCER Final. Photo credit should read: Nick Potts/PA Wire.

EVERY CLUB wants to get into the Champions League, not just for TV exposure, prestige or winning the ultimate club trophy but essentially for the money it generates.

This season’s competition is expected to generate around an incredible £1 billion from TV rights. It’s why the Champions League is the biggest cash generator in football and last season £690 million was set aside for prize money alone.

Man United’s pulling power was such that although defeated by Barcelona in the final, they earned £50 million for their efforts while the Catalans only received a “measly” £46 million although they ended up with the trophy.

To put this in perspective, United only picked up £15 million for winning the Premier League title.

It’s a complicated system but basically all the TV and media rights money goes into a market pool to be shared out.

The more one country puts in, the more clubs from that country can take out as a percentage.

In the market pool Chelsea, although eliminated, earned £25 million which was £7 million more than Barca who were the eventual winners.

Rangers, who were also eliminated at the group stage, earned £17 million which in SPL terms is incredible.

The lowest earners by far were MSK Zilina but even they earned a respectable £8 million.

For smaller clubs from lesser known leagues this type of money can be an absolute lifeline. Even a big club like Rangers would admit that their Champions League money allowed them to pay off a large portion of their debt and no doubt the same would be true of Celtic.

For clubs like Man United and Barcelona, this Champions League money has come to be part of the norm and as such is built into their budgets.

So the next time anyone asks you why all the fuss about the Champions League, you can give them a very simple answer . . . MoneyRead more from the Doc in the Journal every Tuesday