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Football

21st Oct 2020

Man United’s debt rockets by 133% as impact of Covid-19 becomes clear

Simon Lloyd

The club’s debt has climbed again.

The coronavirus pandemic’s impact on Manchester United has been laid bare as the club announced its latest financial update on Wednesday.

The release of United’s latest financial figures revealed the club’s debt has surged to £474.1 m – a staggering rise of 133 per cent in the last year.

Revenue has also fallen significantly. United had estimated it to be somewhere in the region of £560m to £580m prior to the pandemic, a figure which would have been substantially down on the record £627.1m posted last year.

In actual fact, the latest figure shows it to be just £509m – a startling £118m drop from last year and significantly below their estimates.

Clearly, the impacts of the pandemic go a long way to explaining the concerning figures. United have been hit by a loss of match-day revenue and the sale of season tickets for the current season.

A statement from executive vice-chariman Ed Woodward stressed the need to adapt to the impact of the pandemic:

‘Our focus remains on protecting the health of our colleagues, fans and community while adapting to the significant economic ramifications of the pandemic,’ Woodward said.

‘Within that context, our top priority is to get fans back into the stadium safely and as soon as possible.

‘We are also committed to playing a constructive role in helping the wider football pyramid through this period of adversity, while exploring options for making the English game stronger and more sustainable in the long-term.

‘This requires strategic vision and leadership from all stakeholders, and we look forward to helping drive forward that process in a timely manner.’

‘On the pitch,’ Woodward continued, ‘we have strengthened the team over the summer and we remain committed to our objective of winning trophies, playing entertaining, attacking football with a blend of Academy graduates and high-quality recruits, while carefully managing our resources to protect the long-term resilience of the Club.’

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