03.06.15, Cologne – On Saturday 6th June, Berlin’s Olympiastadion plays host to the biggest night in European club football as FC Barcelona take on Juventus FC in the 2015 UEFA Champions League final.
On the pitch, they are two of football’s most successful teams. But a study by Repucom has shown that off the pitch, the numbers are weighted in Barcelona’s favour.
Revenues mirror team value
Whilst annual TV and radio rights deals are very similar, ranging from €161m for FC Barcelona and €151m for Juventus, sponsorship and advertising revenues are poles apart. Taking the 2013/14 season as a benchmark, the Catalan team generated more than double (€160m) the figure of their Italian counterparts (€60m). Broken down into the number of sponsors each club has, Barcelona FC again has secured 36 deals, compared to the Turin team’s 27. Barça’s squad in the 2014/15 season estimated to be worth €592m, compared to Juventus’ squad, worth approximately €320m.
Global interest in Barça vs Juve
The number of people interested in the two teams also offers an example of how the two differ. Globally, 540m people say they are interested in Barça, compared to 290m for Juventus. Taking their English speaking social media profiles, the size of FC Barcelona’s Facebook fan base is over four times that of Juve’s, boasting approximately 83m fans, to the Italian side’s 18m fans and the difference on Twitter is even bigger. However, this dominance in terms of figures does not tell the whole story.
Juventus’ Twitter fanbase sees 30% growth
Max Barnett, head of digital for UK&I, Repucom, said: “FC Barcelona’s dominance when it comes to the figures off the pitch is perhaps no real surprise. Their global fan base supported by their world famous squad and remarkable history puts them head and shoulders above most other clubs.
“But when we look into the detail behind, for example, the social media figures of football clubs, we start to see a different picture emerge. One that all clubs need to consider especially during the summer and leading into the 2015/16 season.
“We can see for example which fans are engaging directly, who is most likely to spend with the club online and which platforms the club should invest in. Take Juventus’ Twitter account for example. We know that the Italian side has over 1.8m Twitter followers but is the way they have engaged with this fan base during this Champions League season which has driven this audience up 30%, compared to Barcelona fan base growth of 19%. They have also generated 2.8m engagements, which if targeted properly, can be transferred into revenue.”
Size of stadium no limit for fan potential
Understanding the value of social media audiences can provide the extra boost to income for clubs that don’t perhaps have the fan bases of FC Barcelona.
Other revenue streams such as gate receipts are dictated obviously in large part by stadium capacity, especially for league champions such as FC Barcelona and Juventus. The average match attendance to Camp Nou this season for Barcelona’s home games was 76,737, compared to the Juventus Stadium’s 38,446 average match attendance.
Even with sell-out crowds, there are always revenue streams to grow as both sides have displayed in the run up to the 2015 Champions League final.