Troubled former Italian footballing giants AC Milan have suffered record losses, according to reports in Italy. Gazzetta Dello Sport claimed that in the year to June 30, 2019, losses rose by 16 percent to 146 million (USD 162 million) euros compared to 126 million euros for the same period the previous year. Gazzetta said the figures were far worse than the predicted loss of 90 million euros.
US hedge fund Elliott took over the debt-ridden seven-time European champions from Chinese businessman Li Yonghong in July 2018. The club’s absence from European football has had an impact on merchandising and sponsors, with income from sponsors slipping by 6.7 million euros and ticket sales down by 1.2 million euros.
However, revenues from TV rights rose from 109.3 million to 113.8 million. Milan finished fifth in Serie A last season but surrendered their Europa League berth after breaching UEFA’s financial fair play rules. Revenues from the sale of players in particular dropped from 42 million euros to 25.5 million euros. To keep the club afloat, Elliott have injected 325 million euros in total up until this September, Sky Sport Italia reported.
On the pitch the 18-time Serie A champions are also in turmoil with Marco Giampaolo sacked as coach after just seven games and Stefano Pioli coming in as the club’s eighth coach in five years. Milan won their last Serie A title in 2011, and have not played in the Champions League since the 2013-2014 season.
The club are 13th place in Serie A, following a run of four defeats in seven games.
Italian media mogul and former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who oversaw Milan’s glory years during his 31-year ownership, sold the club to Li in 2017 with Elliot assuming control after the Chinese businessman defaulted on a loan payment.
AC Milan are currently working with city rivals Inter Milan on a new 1.2 billion euro (USD 1.34 billion) stadium project to rebuilt the San Siro and the area surrounding stadium to the west of the city.
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