How would a Champions League group stage exit impact AC Milan financially?

With the risk of being eliminated from the group stage of the Champions League, AC Milan could potentially lose a substantial amount of revenue compared to last season.

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Elimination from the group stage of the Champions League is a real possibility for AC Milan in 2023/24, and this could have a very serious impact on their revenue streams.

The Rossoneri are currently sitting in third place in Group F, one point behind Paris Saint-Germain, and they have tough encounters coming up against Borussia Dortmund at home and Newcastle United away. Although they defeated PSG in their last game and the group is still in the balance, the Italians could be eliminated on Matchday 5 if they lose to Dortmund and PSG defeat the Magpies.

La Gazzetta dello Sport reports that Milan made over €100 million from reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League in 2022/23. However, failing to progress from the group stage would not result in a massive loss of money coming into the club.

Champions League semi-final appearance formed a key part of financial recovery

At the end of the 2022/23 financial year, AC Milan recorded a high revenue, generating €400m for the first time in their history. This brought much pleasure to Rossoneri president Paolo Scaroni, and he is confident that these profits will allow the club to invest more money in the transfer market in the near future.

“The economic results are influenced by the sporting ones,” he said. A Milan that does well in the Champions League and qualifies for next year’s would mean a more sustainable club with important revenue. At that point, we could look at the market in a different way.”

Of that €400m, more than €100m came from progressing deep in the Champions League last season. Milan made about €40m between competition participation, their European ranking over 10 years, market pool money from television rights and coverage, result prizes, and bonuses from sponsors.

Another €15m was made from playing in the group stage; €9.6m from reaching the Round of 16; €10.6m for reaching the quarter-finals, and €12.5m after making the semi-finals. They also made €27.5m in stadium revenue from their three home matches in the knockout rounds.

Ismael Bennacer celebrates putting AC Milan ahead in the Champions League against Napoli. [@acmilan]

How much revenue would AC Milan still earn despite an early Champions League exit?

In the event that AC Milan fail to progress to the Round of 16, they are still expected to receive €50m for participating.

Like all participants in the 2023/24 Champions League, the Rossoneri will make €15.64m from qualifying for the group stage. They will get €19m based on their UEFA ranking, and the rest will come from ticket sales from home games as well as from television coverage.

The money from the TV ratings will be no less than €4m per match. The Rossoneri also get €2.8m for each win and €930,000 for each draw, so they have currently made €4.66m on matchday bonuses.

Despite potentially losing out on about half of their revenue from last season, AC Milan should still generate enough from this season to further improve their economic situation.

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