Thursday, March 29, 2007

European clubs still most wealthy and target Asia

Football's most powerful clubs rose in value by an average 15 percent in the past year as France's Lyon climbed the most and Manchester United retained its No. 1 status, Forbes magazine reported. Ten English Premier League clubs featured in the top 25 along with four from Italy and Germany, two from Spain, France and Scotland and one Dutch club. Half the English teams, whose league is the world's most-watched, have changed ownership since 2003 and two have held takeover talks this year.

"A big reason why these teams are attracting suitors is their growth potential in all of Asia, but China is the key," Salvatore Galatioto, president of New York-based Galatioto Sports Partners, said in the release. "You have great brands with these soccer teams that have not been fully exploited."

Club (Country), Current Value in US$ million, One-Year Change

1. Manchester United (England) 1,453 +6%
2. Real Madrid (Spain) 1,036 +2%
3. Arsenal (England) 915 +9%
4. Bayern Munich (Germany) 838 +9%
5. AC Milan (Italy) 824 -10%
6. Juventus (Italy) 567 -18%
7. Inter Milan (Italy) 555 +10%
8. Chelsea (England) 537 +6%
9. Barcelona (Spain) 535 +22%
10. Schalke (Germany) 471 +45%

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