Leeds United got promoted to the Premier League last season but ended up posting losses of £62m.
Given that, as Athletic journalist Phil Hay pointed out, it’s a good job Marcelo Bielsa finally led them to the top-flight.
Leeds United’s accounts for financial period July 1, 2019 to July 31, 2020 show an overall loss of £62m.
Turnover hit £54m but total admin expenses were £108m. Wage bill was £78m.
Expenditure paid off but safe to say promotion was needed. #lufc
— Phil Hay (@PhilHay_) April 4, 2021
But these are perilous times for football clubs.
Even the clubs at the very top of the game are feeling the pinch from a year that’s been shaped and dominated by the Covid pandemic.
Leeds play Man City next, a club that’s flying high and still fighting for a historic quadruple.
Pep probably has the best Man City team ever playing for him but as a club they still lost £126m in the same period.
BBC journalist Adam Pope relayed their results on Tuesday afternoon.
Leeds United's next opponents Man City announce net loss of £126m for 2019-20 season, but expects to ‘immediately return to profitability’ this year.
City cite 11% reduction in revenues due to delays in matches, ticket & player sales, such as that of Leroy Sane to Bayern. #lufc
— Adam Pope (@apopey) April 6, 2021
That’s a huge sum of money and these losses are painting a picture of an impending financial crisis in the game.
The losses Leeds announced might be more than fans were expecting, but the Man City losses put them in perspective.
If Leeds took a cautious gamble on getting back in the Premier League, Covid made the odds a bit more worrying.
However, Pope also said that Man City are expecting to return to profitability next season and with fans back in Elland Road from the last game of this campaign, Leeds accounts should look a lot healthier too.
Leeds are in a relatively healthy position, with Premier League and 49ers money set to make them a buying club again this summer.
With clubs in France and Spain though to be the worst off, with French clubs facing a collapse of their TV deal, it’s a great time to be a buying club with money.
Overall, though, it’s not the perfect time to be the owner of a football club.
In other Leeds United news, ‘Very, very surprised’ – Phil Hay states why Leeds fans unhappy with club after Athletic update