Elite clubs set to benefit from new Uefa revenue system

European football’s governing body Uefa has unveiled major increases in prize money for the Champions League, with historically successful teams set to benefit under a new system that places more weight on prior success rather than the strength of their respective national television market pools.

Uefa has released details of the distribution of revenue to clubs from the 2018-19 Champions League and Europa League, as well as solidarity payments for the qualifying phases. The gross commercial revenue from the two competitions, as well as the 2018 Super Cup is estimated at around €3.25bn ($3.89bn).

Of the estimated gross amount of €3.25bn, €295m will be deducted to cover organisational costs relating to the competitions, and seven per cent (€227.5m) will be set aside for solidarity payments. Of the resulting net revenue of €2.73bn, 6.5 per cent will be reserved for European football and remain with Uefa, and the other 93.5 per cent will be distributed to the participating clubs.

This means that the total projected amount available for distribution to participating clubs in 2018-19 is €2.55bn, of which €2.04bn will be distributed to clubs competing in the Champions League and Super Cup, and €510m will be distributed to clubs participating in the Europa League.

For the Champions League, a total of €30m will be paid out to the 12 clubs involved in the play-offs, with clubs that are eliminated each receiving a fixed payment of €5m. The winners of the play-offs will not receive any specific payment for this round but will get payments for participating in the group stage.

Uefa has said it forecasts revenues of €1.95bn for clubs competing in the group stage onwards. The net revenue will be divided into four different pillars. Twenty-five per cent will be allocated to the starting fees (€488m), 30 per cent will be allocated through performance-based payments (€585m), 30 per cent will be distributed on the basis of 10-year performance-based coefficient rankings (€585m) and 15 per cent will be allocated to the variable amounts generated by broadcast market pools (€292m).

Through starting fees, Uefa said each of the 32 clubs that qualify for the group stage can expect to receive a group stage allocation of €15.25m, with a further €585m available based on their performance through the competition. Reaching the final will be worth €15m per club alone, with a further €4m given to the winner.

A new ranking has been introduced on the basis of performances over a 10-year period. In addition to coefficient points accumulated during this period, this ranking includes bonus points for winning Uefa club competitions during this period.

On the basis of these parameters, a ranking has been established and the total amount of €585.05m has been divided into coefficient shares, with each share worth €1.108m. The lowest-ranked team will receive one share. One share will be added to every rank and so the highest-ranked team will receive 32 shares (€35.46m).

This alters a system that better rewarded clubs from the most valuable broadcasting markets, such as England and Italy, through enhanced market pool payments. Reigning champion Real Madrid is top-ranked among the 32 teams for next season and will get 32 shares worth €35.46m.

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