A term much bandied about and loved by the English media is that Manchester City is the richest club in the world. Sky Sports News gets this jibe in at Manchester United at every possible chance. Whilst this proposition is treated with contempt by the same media, it is not a coincidence that this vitriol has emanated since Murdochs`s failed attempt to buy the club in 1998. The truth is that Manchester City is the club with the richest owner. The club itself is financially insolvent. The same applies to Chelsea.
When it comes to the value of the club, the media once again is in denial by quoting Deloittes football rich list stating that Real Madrid hold that honour. What they fail to mention is that their net profit is in the minus because of the huge debts they have. These are club debts and not to be confused with the loans taken out by the Glazers when they first bought the club, which are more akin to a mortgage.
The truth is that Manchester United is now far and away the most valuable sports franchise in the world and just to annoy all those green and gold detractors of the Glazers, it is their foresight that has enabled this to come to pass. When they floated the club on the US Stock Exchange, the price dithered for a long time and looked to be in slow decline. However, when people like George Soros buys millions of pounds worth of shares, you know there is something afoot!
Lo and Behold, the stock prices has steadily increased, and now Manchester United plc is valued at $3bn! The nearest to them is the Dallas Cowboys franchise at $2.1bn. Real Madrid, Manchester City and Chelsea are not even in the same league. Whatever you might think about the Glazers personally, their expertise in the sports franchise business is second to none and they have applied US style financial rules to Manchester United to achieve this.
This bodes well for fans of Manchester United around the world, especially as the Financial Fair Play rules gradually start to strangle those clubs that are duplicitous in their financial affairs. The Premier League itself is under pressure to apply its own FFP rules and make them even stricter than those currently enforced by EUFA.
With the existing sponsorship deals adding millions to the coffers and new innovative deals are done almost every month, the latest being a deal with a large drinks company in China, Sir Alex will not be wanting for funds in the coming years. The future looks rosy for United as they march towards yet another Premier League title.