Like comparing any price, when considering the relative value of a business – and lets be fair, football is today a business concern – there are myriad of factors to weigh up
against each other to determine who really is the most valuable club in the world. The peculiar sentiment that this offers is that all fans, given their fraternal love for their team, whatever the status, feels this sense of value, ultimately the financial bottom line gives a good indication of strength.
Most recently, in 2012 Forbes conducted a thorough review of football finances across the globe, factoring in issues as far ranging as the estimated market value of the playing squads to the value of match day tickets. Chelsea came home a very respectable seventh, not bad at all for a club on the verge of bankruptcy within many supporters living memory.
Despite Chelsea ticket sales still leading to sell out attendences in most matches, they have lead the way through the essentially unlimited investment from their Chairman, Roman Abramovich, in making their squad worth approximately $250m by the most conservative estimates. However, as players careers dip and fade, their value is proportional to the TV revenue, merchandising rights, and ticket sales that pay their wages and leave a great deal left over.
Forbes estimate that Chelsea are worth $900m, but this is supported by a venue of $400m. Essentially, they are massively overvalued as their turnover barely, if ever, covers operating costs. They are worth this much because they are supported by the billions their owner has to prop up the club, a trend that shows no sign of declining their prowess on the pitch and intelligence in the boardroom.