The sheer impact of Premier League TV money was summed up at the weekend, with figures released showing what every club will bank this summer.
English football has the strongest league set-up in the World, an astonishing 92 clubs in the top four leagues and then even the National League sees many (most?) of the clubs having gone full-time with their playing staff.
Despite this, the disparity between finishing 20th and 21st in the English football rankings is immense – Newcastle will bank around £7m for winning the Championship and Sunderland more than 14 times that amount for being the worst team in the Premier League for some years.
What about though the Premier League TV money overall since the PL change was made for the 1992/93 season, with a major shift in how cash was distributed in English football.
The excellent Sports Finance specialists Sporting Intelligence have published the table below, outlining what the highest earning clubs have received, including this season’s forecasted TV cash for each of the 20 clubs who were in this past season’s top tier.
As you can see, the headline figure is Manchester United set to go over the one billion mark, whilst Arsenal’s amazing consistency under Wenger puts them a close second.
However, maybe the biggest thing that really stands out is how much your place in the list can depend on when you have spent your seasons in the top tier.
Newcastle will drop to 9th behind West Ham, once this season’s money is paid out but just look at West Brom and Stoke. They have only spent 11 and 9 seasons respectively in the Premier League, yet if Newcastle hadn’t got promotion, in a year’s time the Baggies would have overtaken the Magpies, whilst Stoke would be only a whisker behind.
Likewise, if the Mackems had clung on for another year they would have overtaken Newcastle (if not promoted), despite by then having played five seasons less in the Premier League.
Never has it been more important to be feeding at the top table, so just as well Newcastle fans had Rafa Benitez guiding the club back.
In two years time the next PL TV deals will kick in and already it is being forecast that it will see yet another massive rise in the cash on offer.
It might not be fair but if you aren’t in the Premier League you are heading nowhere fast.