Analysis: Are Premier League clubs recession proof?

9 December 2019

recession PL
Photo: Getty Images How will the next recession hit British clubs? In 2009, it was revealed that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich had lost $10 billion of his their wealth.

Football is an industry awash with cash, but as economists and analysts continue to speculate about the possibility of a downturn in 2020, how will clubs cope with the economic uncertainty that could compromise their financial stability?

While it is common knowledge that financial institutions and major corporates prepare for a possible downturn on an ad-hoc and long-term strategic basis, it is less clear if football clubs envisage a change of circumstances influenced by macro-economics.

Neil Fredrik Jensen

If anyone wants a reminder of how a serious global recession can impact professional football, just visit Valencia in Spain and take a look at the unfinished Nou Mestalla stadium. It has sat dormant for a decade, a ghostly reminder of a crisis that brought Spain to its knees.

Spanish football was assisted by local authorities in working its way through the financial crisis but English football’s major clubs were robust enough to emerge relatively intact. But major economic downturns are cyclical and the UK is due a significant recession.

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