Football Rich List: Sheikh back on top

The 2010/11 incarnation of the list sees the Eastlands benefactor return to the top spot, having been overtaken by Queens Park Rangers stakeholder Lakshmi Mittal in last year’s list.

The ever-rising price of oil has been good news for Sheikh Mansour, with his wealth estimated to have risen £3 billion to a total of £20bn. This has seen him leapfrog Mittal, whose own fortune is now valued at £17bn, down from the £18.4bn of 12 months ago.

LINK:See the full Football Rich List

Both will have been encouraged by their respective sides' start to the season. Manchester City are currently second in the Premier League, having last weekend beaten champions and league leaders Chelsea.

Meanwhile, QPR are current runaway leaders of the Championship, accruing 26 points from a possible 30 so far this term.

Also moving down a place is Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich (£7.4bn), who now stands in fourth place – his lowest ranking since arriving in English football in the summer of 2003.

The Stamford Bridge supremo has been overtaken by Uzbek-Russian tycoon Alisher Usmanov (£8bn). The major Arsenal shareholder’s value has sky-rocketed thanks to rising metal prices over the past 12 months, seeing the 57-year-old climb five places from eighth place in 2009.

The Liebherr family, who have pledged to continue to support League One Southampton financially following the death this summer of Markus Liebherr, now stand in fifth place.

The German-born, Swiss-based industrialist had bought the club just over a year prior to his death, taking the Hampshire side out of administration and investing in the playing staff relatively heavily for a side in English football’s third tier.

Completing the Top 10 are Joe Lewis (Tottenham Hotspur, £2.7bn), Denis O’Brien (Celtic, £1.87bn), Stanley Kroenke (Arsenal, £1.85bn), the Glazer family (Manchester United, £1.53bn) and Bernie Ecclestone (QPR, £1.4bn).

RICHEST PLAYERS (Full list here)

Former Manchester United and Real Madrid star David Beckham is the highest ranking active player, with an estimated wealth of £100 million, a figure which dwarves that of all of his contemporaries.

This includes former England team-mate Michael Owen, who despite being the second richest player on this list still has a wealth just 40 percent the size of Beckham’s.

Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney has dropped out of the top five wealthiest players, with his estimated worth plummeting from £37 million to £25 million following a difficult year on and off the pitch for the striker.

Overtaking Rooney and completing the top five players are Rio Ferdinand (Manchester United, £34m), Sol Campbell (Newcastle United, £31m) and Ryan Giggs (Manchester United, £27m).

RICHEST MANAGERS (Full list here)

As has been the trend in recent years, managers are also getting in on the act (six managers featured in last year’s Top 100).

England’s much-maligned coach Fabio Capello continues to lead the way as the wealthiest manager in the British game, with an estate worth an estimated £36 million.

He is joined in the list by the likes of Roy Keane (Ipswich Town, £28m), Sir Alex Ferguson (Manchester United, £22m), Carlo Ancelotti (Chelsea

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Gary Parkinson is a freelance writer, editor, trainer, muso, singer, actor and coach. He spent 14 years at FourFourTwo as the Global Digital Editor and continues to regularly contribute to the magazine and website, including major features on Euro 96, Subbuteo, Robert Maxwell and the inside story of Liverpool's 1990 title win. He is also a Bolton Wanderers fan.