SBC’s on the Ball – Ronaldo’s Italian job

As both the World Cup and the transfer window simultaneously reach fever pitch, there’s been a plethora of business news from the world of football. This edition looks at the potential transfer of football’s biggest star and the astonishing viewing figures that are being drawn by the World Cup.

Ronaldo’s remarkable move

In a transfer that would send shockwaves throughout world football, Italian champions Juventus have been touted with a move for Real Madrid’s all time leading goalscorer, Cristiano Ronaldo.

Given Ronaldo’s astonishing goalscoring record and unrivalled brand image, it’s unsurprising that the potential move has already had an impact on Italian football. The news sent shares in Bianconeri soaring 10% on thursday as the Ronaldo rumours reached fever pitch.

A trader from Milan detailed to Reuters just how widespread the benefits would be for Juventus: “It would be a big deal, increasing the team’s appeal and also because it would bigger business for Juve, through merchandising.”

Speaking on Bein Sports, former Inter Milan and Italy striker Christian Vieri emphasised just how significant the signing will be when it comes to increasing audience engagement in Serie A: “For Italian football it would be like winning the lottery, “People don’t talk about Serie A much abroad, because there aren’t the superstars there were in the past. Ronaldo would revitalise it.

“Even I would be more motivated to watch the league, every Sunday the world would be wondering what Juventus did and how many goals Cristiano scored.”

Additionally, the timing of the transfer couldn’t be better for Italian football as the ban of gambling companies being used as sponsors in the country, has caused many of the league’s clubs to voice their concern.

In a statement, the league’s governing body outlined: “The Lega Serie A is following with extreme worry the developments of the ‘Decreto Legge Dignita’ and the impact on Italian football of rules which ban advertising from betting firms.

“In highlighting the clear disparity compared to other countries in Europe and the world, where such bans don’t exist, and showing the negative consequences of such a measure, the Lega Serie A points out that in the 2017-18 season 12 top-flight clubs had a partnership agreement with companies from the betting sector.”

Rossoneri on the receiving end of FFP sanctions

After a summer of splashing the cash, Italian giants AC Milan have been suspended from European competitions for one year. The sanction means that despite finishing sixth in Serie A last season, AC Milan won’t enter the Europa League for the upcoming season.

Uefa commented: “The Adjudicatory Chamber of the Club Financial Control Body (CFCB) has taken a decision in the case of the club AC Milan that had been referred to it by the CFCB Chief Investigator for the breach of the Uefa Club Licensing and Financial Fair Play Regulations, in particular the break-even requirement.”

The nation gets behind the Three Lions 

ITV has reported that viewing figures for England’s dramatic last 16 victory over Colombia on tuesday night, detailing that 81% of the UK’s television audience were plugged into the game. The figures were the highest since the opening ceremony to the Olympics, the average figures for the game were around 20.2 million, and they peaked at 24.4 million when Eric Dier scored the winning penalty.

Most viewed Icelandic sporting event in tournament history

Remarkable viewing figures remain a recurring theme of this World Cup, as Iceland’s National Broadcasting Service, RÚV revealed that a staggering 99.6% of Icelanders who were tuned into television, were in fact watching their country’s stunning draw with Lionel Messi and Argentina.

The station confirmed that the event was the most watched sporting event in history, overtaking the previous record which was set two years ago, when Iceland knocked England out of Euro 2016.

Uefa unveils distribution details for 2019

UEFA has unveiled details of the distribution of revenue to clubs from the 2018/19 UEFA Champions League, the 2018/19 UEFA Europa League and the 2018 UEFA Super Cup.

European football’s governing body revealed that gross commercial revenue from the 2018/19 UEFA Champions League, the 2018/19 UEFA Europa League and the 2018 UEFA Super Cup is estimated at around €3.25bn.

Of the estimated gross amount of €3.25bn, €295m will be deducted to cover organisational costs relating to the competitions, and 7% (€227.5m) will be set aside for solidarity payments. Of the resulting net revenue of €2.73bn, 6.5% will be reserved for European football and remain with UEFA, and the other 93.5% will be distributed to the participating clubs.

On the basis of the above revenue forecast and set allocations, the total amount available for distribution to participating clubs in 2018/19 is €2.55bn, of which €2.04bn will be distributed to clubs competing in the UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Super Cup, and €510m will be distributed to clubs participating in the UEFA Europa League, to find out more about how the additional revenue will be distributed, click here.