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Motherwell announce loss after gate receipts fall

Motherwell made a £436,000 loss last season after posting record profits the previous campaign.

The club accounts for the year to 31 May 2019 showed revenue had fallen by more than £2million on the previous campaign, when Motherwell reached both major cup finals in Scotland.

After making a £1.7million profit in 2017-18, the accounts show Motherwell had £476,000 cash and cash equivalents halfway through 2019.

Motherwell finished eighth in the Ladbrokes Premiership last season, down one place on the previous year, reached the quarter-finals of the Betfred Cup and lost to Ross County at the first hurdle in the William Hill Scottish Cup.

Gate receipts were down close to 50 per cent to £1.6million, broadcasting rights went down about a quarter to £1.4million and prize money, including UEFA solidarity payments, fell from £750,000 to £160,000.

Transfer income was also down on the previous year but still an impressive £781,000, mainly from the first instalments of the sale of Cedric Kipre to Wigan.

The board’s strategic report stated that, after reviewing the financial landscape of the Ladbrokes Premiership, an “increase to the playing budget was necessary to try and maintain competitiveness within the division”.

Total staff costs went up by about £50,000 to almost £4million – about £600,000 less than the total revenue.

The club made a number of pitch and stadium improvements, including replacement of the irrigation system, a new scoreboard, upgraded dressing rooms, tunnel and offices, plus a new turnstile entry system.

Motherwell also made a reduction of £617,000 in their debt to two former owners. More than £100,000 was repaid to John Boyle and more than £200,000 handed back to Les Hutchison, who also wrote off almost £300,000.

The two loans were repaid in full this season, leaving £80,000 in loans outstanding to five “Motherwell-supporting individuals”.