By Harry Deacon
In the post-Alex Ferguson age, arguably the biggest side in English football – Manchester United – has struggled to find its feet.
A measly one win out of their last six games has slumped Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side down to tenth in the Premier League, which is a position unknown to the United greats of less than a decade ago – and also represents the worst start league start for the Old Trafford outfit in 30 years.
Yet, for all their woes on the pitch and in the dressing room, the size of the club as a brand is still producing meteoric revenues from its global ventures.
A total of £627.1m was vacuumed towards Old Trafford in the 12 months leading up to July 2019, a significant increase on the £589.8m made in the year before that.
Further increases to sponsorship deals, whether by renewing old contracts or acquiring new ones, have kept the Red Devils’ sponsorship revenue at a steady £173m, perhaps giving an insight to why the purse strings at Old Trafford are often very loosely attached.
The arrivals of Harry Maguire, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, and Daniel James cost the club just shy of £150m this summer, but when one sees the cash flow that makes its way through Glazer-Woodward set-up, the transfer sums do not seem so vast.
It can be seen, then, that although Manchester United are struggling to find form after Solskjaer’s brief honeymoon period ended, the financial backing around the club will always act as a cushion to fall back on for those at Old Trafford.
Solskjaer is clearly trying to build a dynasty, with a mix of academy products and young signings. While the team is still a long way from being complete, the revenues produced by the club’s as a brand will be comforting for his transfer strategy.
That said, with Champions League football no longer visiting Old Trafford, revenues could take a sharp downturn in the not so distant future. In order to maintain the status of a once-dominant club, the current side will have to force their way back to the top of the Premier League, and soon.
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