The Spanish champions became the first sports club to surpass €500 million revenue in a single year, their total revenue of €512.6m representing a seven percent (€31.m) increase over the previous 12 months.
This kept them ahead of fierce rivals Barcelona (€483m), Premier League giants Manchester United (€395.9m) and Bundesliga side Bayern Munich (€368.4m) in the 16th annual list of world football's highest-earning clubs.
Champions League winners Chelsea (€322.6m) and London neighbours Arsenal (€290.3m) complete an unchanged top six, while the newest Premier League addition are Newcastle United, replacing La Liga's Valencia in 20th position thanks to their revenue increasing from €98m to €115.3m in 2011/12.
Premier League champions Manchester City saw their revenue rocket up by €116m to €285.6m between 2010/11 and 2011/12. This saw the English club move up five places to seventh, overtaking AC Milan (€256.9m), Liverpool (€233.2m), Inter (€185.9m), Tottenham Hotspur (€178.2m) and Schalke 04 (€174.5m).
Austin Houlihan, Senior Manager in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said: "Manchester City’s Premier League title winning season combined with participation in the UEFA Champions League, helped drive 51 percent revenue growth to €285.6m, the largest absolute and relative growth of any Money League club.
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"The club's progress to the top of the English and European game means that they are set to remain a top 10 Money League club for the foreseeable future, and will look to push on ahead of the two English clubs immediately above them in the Money League, Arsenal and Chelsea, for a top-five ranking.”
City's debut campaign in the prestigious Champions League in 2011/12 played a big part in them boosting their match-day revenue by €8.6m, and their broadcasting revenue by €32.9m - figures still dwarfed by those of rivals Manchester United, who registered match-day revenue of €122m and broadcasting revenue of €128.5m for 2011/12.
City's commercial revenue saw the biggest increase (€73.5m), with the 10-year €434m stadium naming rights and shirt sponsorship deal with Etihad Airways a significant factor in the rise.
The deal helped City overtake all Premier League teams bar Manchester United in commercial terms, but caused some controversy.
City chiefs were forced to deny they had concocted the deal specifically to help them negate UEFA's Financial Fair Play proposals, with City owner Sheik Mansour also having links to the airline.
Commenting on the impact of UEFA’s Financial Fair Play break-even requirement, Paul Rawnsley, a Director in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said: "Whilst the Money League covers clubs’ revenue performance, there is an increasing focus within European football on clubs achieving more sustainable levels of expenditure relative to revenues, particularly given UEFA’s financial fair play break-even requirement.
"Disciplined and responsible governance structures and financial management within European football, whilst providing the platform for investment in facilities and youth development, should only be encouraged."
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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.