London (AFP) – Chelsea’s form on the pitch may have fallen away of late but the future looks rosy, according to chairman Bruce Buck, as the Premier League side posted a profit of £32.5million ($44.4 million) for the year ended June 30, 2020.
The figures reflect the impact the halt to the Premier League season in March had due to the coronavirus pandemic as overall turnover for the group fell from £446.7 million to £407.4 million.
Broadcasting and matchday revenues decreased by £17.6 million and £12.2 million respectively largely due to the suspension of the campaign.
However, qualification for the Champions League and surplus made “on a number of player sales” helped them post positive results.
Reduced matchday costs because of games being postponed helped partially offset the losses from the pandemic.
Chelsea played their final four home Premier League games of the interrupted domestic campaign and also the conclusion of both the FA Cup and Champions League fixtures behind closed doors, the majority of which fell into the 2021 financial year.
Commercial revenue was also down by £9.5 million, with non-match day activities in and around Stamford Bridge also closed because of the pandemic.
Chelsea also invested £93.7 million in the squad during the 2020 financial year, which included existing player contract renegotiations.
However, the big-money summer signings of Kai Havertz, Timo Werner, Ben Chilwell and Edouard Mendy are not covered in the 2020 results as they were all completed after June 30.
“In common with many, many businesses across the globe, the pandemic has had a significant impact on Chelsea’s income,” said Buck on the club website.
“But it is a sign of the strength and stability of our financial operation that the company was still able to post a profit in the past financial year.
“This was done while continuing to invest in our playing staff and indeed had normal football not halted in March, projections show a record profit and record turnover would have been achieved.
“That would have represented an increase in revenue for a fifth year in succession.”
Buck said there was an air of optimism and positivity around the club even though on the pitch they have taken just four points in their last five matches.
They head into Sunday’s home match with Manchester City seven points adrift of leaders Liverpool.
“Despite the impact of COVID, the revenue streams remained strong, our team is developing on the pitch and the club is in a good position to continue to grow when football is able to operate as it did previously, a time we are all looking forward to,” said Buck.
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