Champions League absence would prove costly for Man Utd


Failure to qualify for Europe’s Champions League would cost Manchester United more than 30 million pounds ($43 million) in revenue next season, the club said on Friday after reporting a big rise in quarterly profit.

United, English league champions a record 20 times, are currently fifth in the Premier League before the final round of matches and risk missing out on a Champions League spot for the second time in three seasons. Only the top four make it into Europe’s elite club competition.

“In the event we qualify for the Europa League instead of the Champions League, it should be in mid-single digits in terms of the impact on matchday (revenue) and in terms of broadcasting, it should be a little over 30 million pounds in terms of revenue,” Hemen Tseayo, United’s head of corporate finance, told financial analysts.

Dutchman Louis van Gaal, who took over as team manager in 2014 has faced criticism over inconsistent performances and his future looks increasingly uncertain.

Van Gaal has only one year to run on his contract and media reports are linking former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho with the job.

The management issue was not raised during a call hosted by club executives to discuss United’s latest financial results.

Owned by the American Glazer family, United are trying to return to winning ways following the departure in 2013 of manager Alex Ferguson after 26 years in charge during which time United won the Premier League 13 times.

They have reached the FA Cup final, a showpiece of the English season, where they will play Crystal Palace on May 21.

RECORD REVENUE

United reported a 30 percent rise in third-quarter revenue to 123.4 million pounds, boosted by new sponsorship deals and the impact of a new kit supply deal with Germany’s Adidas .

Adjusted core earnings jumped 76.8 percent to 44.9 million pounds in the three months to the end of March.

The club reiterated expectations for higher full-year adjusted core earnings of 178 million to 188 million pounds, while it expects revenue of 500-510 million pounds. It would be the first English club to generate over 500 million pounds in revenue in one season.

United’s global appeal, which it says stretches to 659 million followers, continued to attract business brands, with five sponsorship deals signed in the quarter.

Shares in Manchester United fell 1.8 percent to $16.61 on the New York Stock Exchange at 1450 GMT, valuing the club at around $2.8 billion.-Reuters

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