Real Madrid have topped the league table of the world’s richest football clubs for the fifth year in a row, according to Deloitte.
Its Football Money League also says Real are the first global sports team to see annual revenues top €400m (£357m).
Real’s rivals Barcelona have taken second spot in the list, ahead of Manchester United who drop to third.
The authors of the report said that United would have been top of the Money League if the pound was still at June 2007 levels.
Seven of the top 20 clubs in table are from England, with perennial Champions League qualifiers Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool lying fifth, sixth and seventh respectively. The other three being Tottenham (15th), Manchester City(19th), and relegated club Newcastle United (20th).
All the 20 clubs represented are from the “big five” European leagues, with Germany contributing five clubs, Italy four, and France and Spain two each.
Real were boosted by a much-improved television contract with Mediapro, guaranteeing the club more than €1.1bn over seven seasons.
Barcelona had a hugely successful season, winning La Liga and the Champions League – beating Manchester United, who won the English Premier League in 2008/09, in the final.
“We continue to assert that the game’s top clubs are well placed to meet the challenges presented by the difficult economic environment,” said Deloitte’s Dan Jones, who compiled the report.
“Their large and loyal supporter bases, ability to drive broadcast audiences, and continuing attraction to corporate partners, provide a strong base to underpin revenues.”
He said that this was illustrated by the fact that the combined revenues of the top 20 Money League clubs was over €3.9bn in 2008/09, up €26m on the previous year.
There was not a great deal of change in the top 20, with two new clubs – Werder Bremen and Manchester City – replacing Stuttgart and Fenerbahce.
Jones said the limited change “reflects the fact that those clubs with the largest supporter bases in strongest economic markets, high attraction to commercial partners, and consistent participation in European competition, will dominate the top positions”.
However, there were warnings that many clubs now face “increased pressure on ticket pricing strategies and all clubs will continue to face challenges in managing match day” returns.
And the report also points out that the current season, 2009-10, will give a better indication about whether the global recession has had a major impact on clubs’ revenues.
The Deloitte review does not include the cost of transfer fees or player wages, or VAT and other sales taxes, and concentrates solely on day-to-day income from football business.
World’s wealthiest clubs by revenue
1) Real Madrid: €401.4m
2) Barcelona: €365.9m
3) Man Utd: €327m
4) Bayern Munich: €289.5m
5) Arsenal: €263m
6) Chelsea: €242.3m
7) Liverpool: €217m
8) Juventus: €202.3m
9) Inter €196.5m
10) Milan: €196.5.m
Source: Deloitte: 2008/09