In May, Chelsea was crowned the Premier League champion for the second time in three seasons. It’s a success many think will be seen this time around as well. But according to Creditsafe, there’s one particular league it fails spectacularly in.
The Credit Worthiness Premier League was borne from a combination of financial factors, industry analysis and directors’ history to assess risk of insolvency. An algorithm then assigned each club a rating. And, as in most cases, high ratings come from good scores – and sound finances.
It was suggested that despite having a turnover of more than £335m, Chelsea had the worst score of the league – and would promptly have found itself relegated. Following in its steps were Newcastle United and Brighton Hove Albion, which had a credit rating of 27 and 21 respectfully – a score of 46, displayed by West Ham, was the cut-off point.
Unfortunately, Chelsea was one point behind, with an assigned rating of 45. This was, Credit safe explained, largely due to its poor debt/asset ratio – and the fact that it took, on average, 28 days beyond agreed payment terms to pay invoices.
Rachel Mainwaring, operations director at Creditsafe UK, explained: “Unfortunately the success of Chelsea last season has not been reflected in its position in our alternative Premier League, as the club slips into the relegation zone, down from 13th in last year’s table.
“As we have seen through the release of clubs’ financial reports and the transfer fees being paid this summer, football clubs are now dealing in extremely large sums of money. With this being a trend set to continue, having a credible credit record will enable Premier League clubs to demonstrate solvency, secure funding and deliver success to the fans.”
At the other end of the table sits Manchester City, crowned with a rating of 96. It jumped up from sixth place last year and sits just ahead of Leicester City with 93 – the leader of the previous league.
The former seems to have come a long way since Creditsafe’s prior analysis, where Northern Powerhouse clubs, the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United, were dropped into the relegation zone due to unpaid invoices – £27,381 and £857,183 respectively at the time.
And just as Manchester City now tops the charts, so too does Manchester United find itself ranked among the top ten, with a credit score of 83.
Nonetheless, Mainwaring opined, “with all the money that is available to its top clubs, late payment is rife. This is a problem for businesses dealing with the wealthy premier league clubs, who find themselves with a potentially dangerous financial shortfall.”
Below is the ranking in full: