Powerful Bayern in profit despite the virus

BAYERN Munich recently revealed a drop of around € 50 million in revenues in 2019-20 due  to the covid-19 pandemic, but the Bavarians’ financial statements make reasonable reading at this stage of the crisis. 

Bayern made a net profit of € 9.6 million versus € 52.5 million in 2018-19. While matchday income would have been decimated over the course of the past year, Bayern’s commercial momentum clearly bolstered overall performance. Even as the news of their 2019-20 finances was being absorbed, the club announced new partnerships with domestic appliance manufacturer Miele and Beats by Dr. Dre, the fashionable audio brand.

The club’s executive vice-chairman, Jan-Christian Dreesen said that while the exclusion of spectators since March 2020 has had a considerable impact, the fact Bayern posted a profit was “an expression of the principle we have lived by for decades, namely, not to spend more than we earn. The club stands on a solid foundation that has been steadily strengthened over the past few years and is now proving its worth in times of crisis.”

Bayern has experienced a drop in liquidity, but the club has enough to handle the crisis. Interestingly, with the players taking a voluntary cut in wages, Bayern was able to further commit to the social programmes that are greatly appreciated in the city of Munich.

2020 has clearly been the year of Bayern, although how Hansi Flick did not win the FIFA coach award is beyond most people. Winning the treble of Champions League, Bundesliga and DFB Pokal, an achievement that few clubs have managed, surely should have been recognised. His compatriot, the ever-popular Jürgen Klopp, was named top coach. Although he has only been in the job a short while, Flick’s record is phenomenal and his 2.54 points per match is the highest in Bundesliga history, even better than Pep Guardiola’s rate of 2.52 per match.

Bayern go in to the winter break on top of the Bundesliga having won 2-1 against previously unbeaten leaders Bayer Leverkusen with a last minute goal. Bayern have continued their goal-happy form this season and have netted 39 in 13 games. Robert Lewandowski, named FIFA’s player of the year, has scored 17 goals in the league so far. In the Champions League, Bayern will face Lazio in the last 16 after going through the group phase unbeaten and maintaining their three goals-per-game scoring rate. 

Anyone thinking this current Bayern team has peaked would be mistaken. The squad is relatively young – with an average age of 25.2, they are younger than all of Europe’s top sides. They have more domestic players than almost all of Europe’s elite clubs – 43.3% – and their squad is valued by Transfermarkt at € 888 million, a figure only bettered by Liverpool (€ 1.1bn) and Manchester City (€ 1.06bn). Furthermore, Bayern have some of Europe’s most coveted players in their line-up – Joshua Kimmich (25), Serge Gnabry (25), Alphonso Davies (20), Leroy Sané (24) and Robert Lewandowski (32) are all in KPMG’s top 40 players by value.

Sané, who cost Bayern € 49 million from Manchester City, has struggled to find his place at the club. Against Leverkusen, he came on as a substitute and was later subbed by Flick, a humiliating experience for any player. Bayern’s chief executive Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has publicly supported Sané, insisting the club will eventually get the best out of the Germany international.

Bayern are still looking to strengthen their team and have their eyes on Barcelona’s Frenkie De Jong and RB Leipzig’s Dayot Upamecano. Who would bet against them repeating their success of 2019-20?

Photo: PA Images

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