Manchester United’s net debt rose by $95.5 million (£73.6 million) to $508 million (£391.3 million) in the past 12 months after the club published their second-quarter financial report.
Total revenue also fell by almost 12 percent in the six months leading up to December, via football finance expert Kieran Maguire:
This comes after the Red Devils dropped to third in the latest Deloitte Money League report published in January, with United said to be at risk of losing their place as the Premier League’s most valuable outfit.
United’s absence from the UEFA Champions League this season has had a noticeable knock-on effect, with broadcast revenue plummeting $50.7 million (£39 million)—a fall of 37.6 percent.
The Guardian’s Jamie Jackson wrote that the club is said to view the rise as manageable, in part because the “gross debt remains the same.”
Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward released a statement just prior to speaking with the club’s investors on Tuesday, rationalising the figures as acceptable during a season of transition:
“This season is one of rebuild, with many changes to the squad - in terms of players who have left or gone out on loan; new players who we have brought into the club; and Academy graduates that we have brought through to the first team. This process will continue as we implement our plan and our footballing vision under Ole and his coaching staff.”
The club continues to strike sponsorships and find new ways of earning money off the field, though declining performances on the pitch put them at risk of sinking.
United paid an initial $60.9 million (£46.5 million) to sign Bruno Fernandes from Sporting CP in January, though that deal could rise to $88.6 million (£67.7 million). Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be largely pleased with the start his new midfielder has made, scoring his maiden United goal in Sunday’s 3-0 win over Watford.
United are fifth in the Premier League with 11 matches remaining, though that could be sufficient to clinch Champions League football if rivals Manchester City fail in the appeal against their two-year European ban.