8th August 2021

8th August 2021 – Premier League Clubs Achieve Record Economic Losses For Second Successive Season


Third successive season of decline in economic performance following record economic profit of £224m in 2016-17

Combined economic losses for England’s 44 senior football clubs (FA Premier League and EFL Championship) reaches record £1.89bn for 2019-20 season

London 8th August 2021

Premier League clubs achieved record economic losses totalling £1.38bn for the 2019-20 season, according to financial and strategy analysts Vysyble. This represents an increase of £785.36m or 130.99% over the previous and Covid-free season’s record economic loss of £599.54m in 2018-19.

  • Table of 2019-20 Premier League clubs ranked by Economic Profit/Loss performance follows:

“The 2019-20 numbers are catastrophic and come as the latest instalment in a significant decline in Premier League club economic profitability stretching back to 2017-18 with accumulated losses of almost £2.0bn over the period.

Financial mismanagement resulting in such large and consistent losses coupled with weak regulatory oversight and a series of widely held but deeply mistaken in-going beliefs culminate in explaining the emergence of Project Big Picture and the European Super League. Covid-19 has merely accelerated an already existing trend.

Since 2010, Premier League clubs have achieved economic losses of £3.5bn from a revenue of £34.25bn with just 35% of Premier League club balance sheets achieving an annual economic profit. Thus the notion of profitable football is misguided at best. The European Super League, as we had predicted back in 2016, was always going to be the logical reaction to such poor returns,” said Roger Bell, Co-founder of Vysyble.

With three EFL (English Football League) Championship clubs yet to release their full 2019-20 accounts, the second senior tier of English football behind the Premier League has so far achieved collective economic losses of £512.53m from revenue of £626.60m. The final economic loss total is expected to be at least £550m.

The overall result is that England’s 44 most senior clubs in the top two tiers of football will generate almost £5.25bn in revenue yet are highly likely to produce record economic losses close to £1.95bn in a single season.

‘Our data clearly demonstrates that football’s financial and economic model is in disarray yet those running the game are seemingly oblivious and refuse to acknowledge our findings. Given that we have been largely correct in our assumptions and predictions, we fear for the game if it continues to ignore the fundamental economic situation. In other industries where there are similar levels of economic losses, major structural reform is often the result along with bankruptcies, mergers and acquisitions,’  said Bell.

Based on the “economic profit” concept – a much more demanding and intellectually robust measure of performance that incorporates all of the costs of doing business including tax and the cost of equity capital – Premier League clubs have generated a collective revenue of £40.62bn since 2009 but have also produced economic losses totalling £4.10bn.

Since 2009, the Premier League club cohort has produced just two collective economic profits from 12 seasons, in 2016-17 (profit of £224.39m) and in 2017-18 (profit of £31.59m).  

The 6th edition of Vysyble’s annual report on football finance ‘We’re So Rich It’s Unbelievable! – The Illusion of Wealth Within Football’ is currently in production and will be available in September 2021 via www.vysyble.com.

Vysyble was launched in August 2016 and has gained international recognition in the calculation and examination of companies and market sectors in the achievement of Economic Profit and the creation of fundamental value.


The report can be found here.

More information about Economic Profit can be found here.

Previous media coverage can be found here.

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