Manchester United report 12.2% drop in revenue

<p>Manchester United’s failure to reach the Champions League has hit the club’s revenues.</p>

Manchester United's failure to qualify for this season's Champions League has hit the club's revenues.

The 20-time league champions saw revenues fall by 12.2 per cent to £194.4 million for the six months to the end of December 2014. Profits also fell 52 per cent to £8.9 million for the period as the club missed out on broadcast and match-day revenues. United's failure to reach Europe's elite club competition meant they failed to secure payments from kit supplier Nike.

Ed Woodward, United's chief executive, noted that despite the falls in revenues and profits, it was offset by a 23 per cent increase in sponsorship revenues which has grown to £35.8 million. In 2014, the club secured a record deal with German sportswear firm Adidas worth a huge £750 million over the course of ten years.

The Adidas deal, which will come into effect from the 2015/16 season, comes after Nike decided against continuing its relationship with the club. United's agreement eclipses any other deal in professional sport and will see Adidas pay £75 million a season to the club, dwarfing the current highest of £31 million-a-year paid by the company to Real Madrid.

Mr Woodward said: "Notwithstanding no European football this season, our revenues remain strong. On the pitch, the team is well positioned to challenge for a top-four finish in the Premier League and we look forward to the rest of the season."

Underperforming champions

The 2013/14 season was a disaster by United's standards. As defending champions, the club was unable to make the top six in the Premier League and finished a hugely disappointing seventh. Manager David Moyes, touted as the successor for Sir Alex Ferguson, was dismissed in April and replaced by Dutchman Louis van Gaal at the beginning of the 2014/15 season.

Despite spending in excess of £150 million during the summer transfer window, United have so far failed to mount a sizeable challenge for the league title. They currently sit in third position, 12 points behind league leaders Chelsea.

Following the fall in revenues, United's share price grew by 1.04 per cent.

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