FC Barcelona have estimated that they will experience a 30 per cent loss in revenue for the 2019/20 season as a result of the coronavirus pandemic which saw the club finish the season behind closed doors in their 99,000 plus seat stadium.
The 26-time La Liga champions predicted they would generate €1.05 billion (US$1.24 billion) for the 2019/20 campaign, yet the impact of COVID-19 may cause the Spanish side to lose out on €315 million (US$370 million) in revenue.
In April, president Josep Maria Bartomeu revealed changes had to be made to the existing models and procedures to help them overcome this difficult period. The €1.05 billion revenue estimate was going to be the highest revenue for any football club in the world, though Barca have utilised cost-cutting strategies to prevent any further damage.
Players even experienced a 70 per cent pay cut. If business returns ‘back to normal’ then La Liga’s runners-up will achieve revenues around €735 million (US$871 million) for 2019/20.
"These measures are in addition to those that the club already implemented at the outset of the pandemic, in order to maximise savings to minimise losses due to the lack of revenue in the final quarter of the 2019/20 season," a statement by the club said.
For the 2018/19 season, the Spanish giants recorded a revenue of €990 million, a €76 million increase from the 2017/16 season, when they won La Liga with an 11-point gap on runners up Atlético Madrid and was knocked out in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League by Liverpool.
Elections for the new president of Barca will be held on March 20 and 21 2021 replacing Bartomeu who has been experiencing backlash from players and fans for their performances. Most notably after the 8-2 destruction from Bayern Munich in the semi-final of the UEFA Champions League.
Talisman Lionel Messi handed in a transfer request on his return from the tournament but has decided to remain part of the squad as he didn’t want to take the club to court. On the other hand, star players such as Luis Suarez have also been rumoured to be leaving in the transfer window as the club are experiencing a serious rebuild under new manager Ronald Koeman.
The 2020/21 La Liga season began last Saturday when Barcelona defeated Gimnàstic by three goals to one.
Author: James Parker