CHELSEA HAVE POSTED record-breaking financial results for 2013, despite their UEFA Champions League exit and lavish transfer spending.
The London club raked in £255.8 million in the 12 months to 30 June, an all-time high turnover, although that ultimately resulted in losses of £49.4m.
Despite their finances being in the red, the club confirmed they still expect to comply with UEFA’s Financial Fair Play criteria.
That figure is in stark contrast to their results from the previous year, which saw them turn a profit for the first time under the ownership of Roman Abramovich – although their 2012 Champions League triumph was factored into those results.
Under the guidance of Champions League-winning coach Roberto Di Matteo, Chelsea failed to make it out of their pool in Europe’s premier club competition last season, finishing third in Group E behind Juventus and Shakhtar Donetsk.
Rafael Benitez ultimately guided the club to success in the UEFA Europa League, but the competition does not hold significant financial benefits in comparison to its more illustrious counterpart.
Chelsea’s close-season spending is reported to have amounted to near £70m – with the likes of Willian, Andre Schurrle and Marco van Ginkel signed on multi-million pound deals. Samuel Eto’o also signed on a free transfer on Anzhi Makhachkala, although his one-year contract is thought to be worth £7m.
A 19 per cent rise in commercial income accounted for nearly £80m in the club coffers, a figure that delighted chief executive Ron Gourlay.
He told the club’s official website: “For Chelsea FC to achieve a record level of turnover despite our first group-stage elimination from the Champions League shows we have structured our business and are growing in the correct way for long-term stability.
“Our philosophy is we build upon success on the pitch and although in these financial results we haven’t repeated the sizeable profits made the previous year from player transfers, we believe the age profile of the existing squad means we will benefit from that investment for many years to come.
“A successful team builds awareness around the world and our increased commercial revenues in 2012-13 and new or extended partnership deals demonstrate we are working hard to capitalise on that.”