Manchester United

Man Utd finance chief against handing greater share of Champions League revenue to smaller clubs

Sean Walsh
Cliff Baty is against such a proposal
Cliff Baty is against such a proposal / Catherine Ivill/GettyImages

Manchester United’s finance chief Cliff Baty has suggested that it would be unjust to reward smaller clubs with a larger share of revenue brought in by European club competitions.

The revenue expected to be brought in through UEFA competitions from 2024 to 2027 stands at £4.1bn a year, and there have been calls - particularly from Jacco Swart, managing director of the European Leagues group - to divide that money up in solidarity with clubs competing in the Europa League, Europa Conference League and those who did not achieve qualification.

Swart also said that the sums awarded to clubs based on historical coefficient and television market pull should be reduced. But Man Utd's Baty believes that the top clubs are the reason for such high revenues and so should take a bigger share home with them instead, insisting he would rather find another way to help smaller sides.

"One thing I would say from our perspective is that [the split] gives us a degree of certainty that helps in terms of sustainability, and all the discussions that are happening around financial sustainability and financial fair play in football," he said.

"If you take that away, it’s going to increase the volatility and it’s going to be more difficult for us to manage.

"And whilst I appreciate the sentiment of wanting to give more money [to smaller clubs and those not in European competition] the pie is getting bigger, [and] the reason the broadcasters are paying that much money is for the product, frankly at the Champions League level.

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"If you’re changing the distribution and wanting more money, I think you’ve got to be careful what you’re doing there. We all know where the value is created, let’s not kid ourselves.

"I think we should put more money down, I totally agree with the sentiment, but the value is created at the top. So if you start changing that, and making it more difficult for the bigger clubs to perform, it’s hard."