Real Madrid tops Forbes list of most valuable clubs

Real Madrid tops Forbes list of most valuable clubs

South American Soccer

Real Madrid tops Forbes list of most valuable clubs

Real Madrid's players swamp Sergio Ramos as they celebrate his goal

There’s a new leader at the top of Forbes list of the world’s most valuable soccer teams.

For the first time since Forbes began calculating the value of soccer clubs in 2004, Manchester United is not the most valuable club in the world. In the 2013 list, the top honor goes to Real Madrid, valued at $3.3 billion, a 76 percent increase from a year ago. The statistics also show that the Spanish club brought in revenues of $650 million and that they have an operating income of $170 million.

Manchester United have dropped to second place, with a valuation of $3.165 billion, though it’s still a 42 percent increase from a year ago. Barcelona comes in third at $2.6 billion, which amounts to an incredible 99 percent increase from last years rankings.

Arsenal, despite their previous financial issues, sit in fourth on Forbes’ list, while Bayern Munich rounds out the top five.

Despite his age, David Beckham remains the best paid soccer player on the planet, bringing in $50.6 million, $44 million of which is from his many endorsements. Cristiano Ronaldo is listed second, bringing in $43.5, while four-time World Player of the Year Lionel Messi earned just over $40 million total during the last calender year.

English clubs dominate the list, holding five of the top ten move valuable teams. A new entry to the top 20 this year is Brazilian club Corinthians, who are the first non-European club to make Forbes’ list. Last year’s Copa Libertadores champions are valued at $358 million.

What do you make of this news? When do you expect an American team to make the top 20 list?

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