“Don’t worry, we will win our last three matches. » Eduard Romeu, vice-president in charge of economic issues at FC Barcelona, has no doubts, while Barça, third in their Champions League group, receives this Wednesday evening Inter Milan, who beat them. in the first leg (1-0, October 4). This optimism hides a sporting and economic obligation, since he admitted last Thursday that the Catalans’ budget included a qualification for the quarter-finals. Barça de Xavi, who has already lost twice in three days, could therefore face new economic difficulties in the event of a poor performance this Wednesday evening.
While Joan Laporta activated this summer the sale of 25% of the TV rights and 49% of the club’s audiovisual company, the latter lives in uncertainty. If its economic health is better, with a profit of €98 million for the 2021-2022 financial year, this figure takes into account these famous economic levers. Exceptional and non-annual income. According to Marc Duch, tax advisor by trade and president of a group of socios, “Barça is not yet viable, it remains in deficit”.
One lever can hide another
Internally, the discourse is clear: you have to qualify. A switch to the Europa League, like last season, would be a setback. If Barça continues to work on an ambitious strategy to multiply its income (renovation of the stadium, new sponsors), this must be followed on the ground.
“A lack of exposure in the Champions League could lead sponsors to want to pay less. »
La Liga, of which Barça are the current leader, seems to be a more attainable challenge this season than the Champions League, but the Catalans must at least have a good run there, in order to reassure sponsors and partner companies. ‘While Barca remain an almost indestructible brand, a lack of exposure in the Champions League could lead to sponsors wanting to pay less’believes Marc Duch.
This Wednesday evening, a defeat or a draw against Inter would almost definitively condemn the Catalans to being transferred to the Europa League, which could lead to a shortfall of around €20m. If such a scenario arose, Barça would undoubtedly have to resolve to activate a new lever with the sale of 49% of Barça License and Merchandising, the subsidiary which manages products stamped “Barça”.