Real Madrid top Forbes list for third straight year
Despite a five per cent decrease in their value, Real Madrid kept their place atop Forbes' list of the most valuable football teams in the world.
Real have topped the list since displacing Manchester United in 2013 and, with a value of $3.3billion, are once again at the summit ahead of arch rivals Barcelona ($3.2bn).
The reigning European champions' total revenue of $746million is the highest of any sports team on the planet.
Eight Premier League teams feature in the top 20 of Forbes' list, which is put together by using equity and net debt based on current stadium deals, pre-tax operating income and player trading.
United, whose operating income of $211million dwarfs that of any other club, are third on the list with a value of $3.1bn. Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool are also in the top 10.
The value of Premier League teams seems likely to only increase thanks to a new domestic TV deal that pays an average of $2.7bn annually for three years starting from the 2016-17 season.
Forbes says that when the Premier League's international rights are finalised at the end of the year, its total media rights will surpass $4bn - second only to the NFL's national rights ($5bn).
Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich are fourth on the list, with Serie A duo Juventus and Milan - who suffered a 10 per cent drop in value - rounding off the top 10.
The top 20 teams are worth an average of $1.16bn, which represents an 11 per cent increase from last year.
1.Real Madrid $3.26bn
2. Barcelona $3.16bn
3. Manchester United $3.10bn
4. Bayern Munich $2.35bn
5. Manchester City $1.38bn
6. Chelsea $1.37bn
7. Arsenal $1.31bn
8. Liverpool $982m
9. Juventus $837m
10. Milan $775m
11. Borussia Dortmund $700m
12. Paris Saint-Germain $634m
13. Tottenham $600m
14. Schalke $572m
15. Inter $439m
16. Atletico Madrid $436m
17. Napoli $353m
18. Newcastle United $349m
19. West Ham United $309m
20. Galatasaray $294m