Football: Report underlines untapped potential of Ekstraklasa clubs

Over 2019, clubs from the Ekstraklasa, Poland’s top tier of professional football, generated around PLN 572.3 mln (EUR 126.82 mln) in income, and earned 60 percent more on transfer than the previous year, according to a report by “Rzeczpospolita” and “Sport” dailies.

Legia tops Polish financial football league

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The newspapers prepared a report concerning the structure of the finances of the clubs from Ekstraklasa.

For the first time in a three-year period, the income generated by the clubs of the highest Polish league increased. The total income was PLN 572.3 mln (EUR 126.82 mln). On the other hand, it was still lower than the record year 2016, when Legia Warsaw received bonuses from competing in the UEFA Champions League.

Football clubs in Poland take earnings from three basic sources: match-day revenue, television rights and commercial income.

The clubs received around PLN 100 mln (EUR 22.16 mln) of the net support from the public authorities. The highest amount was paid by the City Hall of Wrocław, south-west Poland, to Śląsk club, which received PLN 16.1 mln (EUR 3.57 mln).

The only club that did not receive any support from local authorities was KGHM Zagłębie Lubin. The club is owned by the copper mining giant KGHM Polska Miedź, which is co-owned by the state treasury.

An additional source of income for clubs are transfers. In 2019, teams sold players for PLN 155.7 mln (EUR 34.5 mln) which was 60 percent more than a year earlier. Nearly one-third of this amount went to Legia Warsaw, while Korona Kielce did not earn anything on transfers.

Although data from 2019 offers reason for optimism, 2020’s figures will most likely look very different, as the COVID-19 pandemic heavily influenced sporting life. The lack of supporters in stadiums and a break during spring lockdown has significantly affected the budget of Polish clubs.