United’s owners, the American tycoon family – Glazers have taken away an estimated £1.1 billion from Man United since owning it in 2005.
According to the fans, the Glazers are the “most hated bosses” of the football world. They are people who only know their own interests and never want to build anything for the club. The Red Devils’ bad start to the 2022/23 English Premier League season has increased the scrutiny of these scandalous owners.
Man United fans staged an anti-Glazer protest ahead of their opening game of the season against Brighton. Because financial numbers revealed by Switzerland’s Ramble (a blog’s main focus is about the role of money in soccer) have re-ignited the fury of supporters.
Switzerland’s Ramble estimates that the Glazers have profited £1.1 billion – a staggering sum – from the club over the past 17 years. This figure includes an interest payment of £743m on money they borrowed to buy the club.
Debt repayments account for an additional £147m, while owners have paid out a dividend of £166m themselves – including £133m over the past decade.
Over the past 10 years, Manchester United’s player spending has never been more than its revenue.
Putting these elements together, I estimate that the Glazers have taken out £1.1 bln from #MUFC (interest £743m, debt repayments £147m, dividends £166m, directors remuneration £55m & management fees £23m). Total cost to United rises to £1.6 bln if £465m share sales are included. pic.twitter.com/5EfthOfKPs
— Swiss Ramble (@SwissRamble) August 16, 2022
The club’s board of directors has been paid £55 million since the Glazers’ arrival, while £23 million has also been used as an “management fee” to pay salaries and contract compensation to managers.
The amount the Glazers have taken from Man United over the past decade is £154m, more than any other Premier League club.
Against that backdrop, the Glazers of Manchester United invested £684m of their own money over the same time period. While Chelsea earned £516m and Aston Villa £506m.
The casual observer might point to £1.4 billion spent on Manchester United transfers over the past decade. But this is money generated entirely by the revenue of Man United, not invested by the owners.
The money United spend on transfers has been underinvested – with the signings of Cristiano Ronaldo, Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho contributing to an increase in the club’s annual salary fund from £323m to £387m – without seeing any improvement in performance.
The performance on the field of the Red Devils has declined miserably, from the championship in 2013 to the bottom of the table in August 2022. Off the pitch, Man United has fallen behind rivals due to not investing in the infrastructure.
Man United’s net capital expenditure over the past decade amounted to £136m – less than Fulham, Leicester City, Liverpool and fellow city club Manchester City. While Tottenham Hotspur, after rebuilding its stadium, has net capital expenditures of £1.4 billion over the past decade.