United World’s 3rd Most Valuable Football Brand Amid Supporter Unrest

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While the backlash against Glazer family ownership remains strong, Manchester United as a brand remains as robust as ever. Today saw the release of the Forbes and Brand Finance list of the 50 most valuable football brands and United were third in the world.

United is also England’s most valuable brand at €1.13 billion, edging out Premier League champions and noisy neighbors Manchester City (€1.19b), who placed fourth. United suffered a 14% decline in brand value this past year, and there are several major reasons for that.

Forbes/Brand Finance 10 Most Valuable Football Brands

  1. Real Madrid (€1.27bn)
  2. Barcelona (€1.26bn)
  3. Machester United (€1.13bn)
  4. Manchester City (€1.19bn)
  5. Bayern Munich (€1.17bn)
  6. Liverpool (€973m)
  7. Paris Saint-Germain (€887m)
  8. Chelsea (€769m)
  9. Tottenham Hotspur (€723m)
  10. Arsenal (€675m)

The European Super League endeavor, which kicked off and then fizzled within 72 hours adversely impacted the brand (#ForTheBrand) of all 12 “founding clubs,” including United.

joel glazer

The ESL folded due to extreme backlash, and that re-ignited the simmering acrimonious malcontent that a large section of the United supporter base has against the Glazers. The ruling family has certainly not done enough to try and address supporter concerns as they’re simply just not communicating enough with the base.

Their “outreaches” have been minimal, only reinforcing the supporter assumption that they see fans as nothing beyond consumers. Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has said that all the protests have hurt the team on the pitch as well.

Meanwhile the covid-19 pandemic has hit everybody, at all economic strata, in the entire world. For the world’s richest football clubs, it’s plagued their matchday revenue streams as not being able to host fans as hit them hard, in various areas of their business.

Still, obviously the club is very much doing alright for itself, financially at least.

As for the team itself, they will travel to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Championship Sunday, before taking on Villareal in the UEFA Europa League final, a week from today in Gdansk.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB NationFollow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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