German clubs earn record turnover

BERLIN - Clubs in Germany's top two divisions earned record turnover of 2.083 billion euros in the 2009/10 season but lost over 100 million euros for the first time since 2003, the league said on Wednesday.

In the past three years turnover has risen by 21.5 percent but last season the 36 clubs also made a loss of 103 million euros, said DFL CEO Christian Seifert.

The 18 Bundesliga clubs recorded turnover of more than 1.7 billion euros, more than all 36 clubs in the top two divisions combined in the 2006/07 season.

The Bundesliga had a deficit of 78 million euros with three clubs responsible for 93 percent of that figure, though the DFL did not name them. The second division had losses of 25 million.

"The Bundesliga is enjoying its acceptance by fans and sponsors alike," Seifert told reporters. "Licensed football has unchanged good prospects to remain a success story."

Despite lacking the big name players on show in the English and Spanish top divisions, the Bundesliga has the highest average attendance - 42,000 - of Europe's top leagues. With a few exceptions all the teams are also financially sound.

Wednesday's report included figures on rising advertising revenues, transfer fees and income from media rights.