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Top 10 most profitable academies in football world

Published at :April 18, 2024 at 12:04 AM
Modified at :April 18, 2024 at 12:04 AM
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(Courtesy : Benfica)


These academies have produced some of the biggest talents in football

Football, often referred to as “The Beautiful Game,” is a global passion that transcends borders. While the spotlight usually shines on top-tier professional clubs and their star players, the roots of success lie in the nurturing grounds of football academies. These academies serve as the breeding grounds for future stars and their impact goes beyond the pitch.

While the top 10 predominantly features European clubs, it’s noteworthy to acknowledge the contributions of academies beyond the continent. Brazilian club Flamengo secures the thirteenth position, and Argentina’s River Plate follows closely in the fourteenth, highlighting the global nature of football talent development.

10. Atalanta BC (Italy) – €250 Million:

Rounding off the top 10, is the Italian club Atalanta BC, with €250 million in transfer revenues. Atalanta’s academy have played a crucial role in their recent success, contributing 51% of their total earnings in the last five years. The club’s ability to develop and capitalize on young talents positions them as a rising force in Italian and European football.

9. Manchester City (England) – €254 Million:

Another English powerhouse, Manchester City, secured the ninth spot with €254 million in transfer revenues. Impressively, 81% of their total earnings come from the last five years, showcasing a recent surge in the success of their academy. Manchester City’s commitment to homegrown talent aligns with their broader strategy of long-term success.

8. Tottenham Hotspur (England) – €256 Million:

Tottenham Hotspur, a prominent English club, claim the eighth spot with €256 million in transfer revenues. The club have seen a surge in contributions from their academy, with 65% of their total earnings generated in the last five years. This underscores the growing importance of youth development in sustaining a club’s competitiveness.

7. Sporting CP (Portugal) – €306 Million:

Portuguese club Sporting CP secured the seventh spot with €306 million in transfer revenues. Sporting CP have maintained a steady stream of talent from their academy, with 38% of their earnings accrued in the last five years. The club’s commitment to player development contributes not only to their success but also to Portugal’s reputation as a footballing powerhouse.

6. AS Monaco (France) – €325 Million:

AS Monaco, a club that made waves with Kylian Mbappé’s transfer to Paris St-Germain, occupies the sixth position with €325 million. While their overall revenues are substantial, 20% of their earnings over the last decade came in the last five years. This underlines the significant impact of high-profile transfers on a club’s financial standing.

5. Chelsea FC (England) – €347 Million:

English club Chelsea FC secured the fifth spot with €347 million in transfer revenues. Chelsea have witnessed a surge in academy success, with an impressive 88% of their total earnings coming in the last five years. The club’s commitment to promoting youth talent is evidently paying off, making them a force to be reckoned with in both domestic and international competitions.

4. Real Madrid (Spain) – €364 Million:

One of the footballing giants, Real Madrid, claimed the fourth position with €364 million. The Spanish powerhouse has a longstanding reputation for nurturing talent, and their academy’s contribution to the transfer market is undeniable. Over half of Real Madrid’s revenues, 56%, have been generated in the last five years, highlighting their continued investment in youth development.

3. Olympique Lyonnais (France) – €370 Million:

Olympique Lyonnais from France, with €370 million in transfer revenues. Lyon boasts a balanced approach to player development, with 50% of their total earnings coming in the last five years. This indicates sustained success over the last decade, with a particular emphasis on recent contributions to the world of football.

2. AFC Ajax (Netherlands) – €376 Million:

Securing the second spot is the Dutch giant, AFC Ajax, with revenue totalling €376 million. Ajax have long been synonymous with developing top-class talents, and this ranking solidifies their commitment to youth development. A remarkable 68% of their revenues came in the last five years, a testament to the contemporary success of their academy system.

1. SL Benfica (Portugal) – €516 Million:

Topping the charts is the esteemed Portuguese club, SL Benfica, with an astounding €516 million in revenue from player transfers. What sets Benfica apart is not just their rich history but their ability to turn promising talents into valuable assets. Two-thirds of this impressive sum has been amassed in the last five years, showcasing the club’s recent prowess in player development.

In the ever-evolving landscape of football, academies serve as the heartbeat of the sport, moulding raw talents into global icons. The top 10 most profitable football academies, as revealed by the CIES Football Observatory, showcase the financial impact of investing in youth development. These clubs not only nurture future stars but also secure their positions at the pinnacle of the footballing hierarchy, both on and off the pitch. As we celebrate their success, it’s a reminder that the true beauty of the game lies in the stories of aspiring youngsters realizing their dreams and leaving an indelible mark on the world of football.

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