Press releases

Brentford and Fulham contest for biggest financial prize in world football

3 August 2020

  • Winner of Tuesday’s Championship Play-Off final will benefit from significant additional revenue, worth c.£135m for Fulham or c.£160m for Brentford across the next three seasons, according to Deloitte;
  • This additional revenue figure could rise to c.£265m over a five year period if the promoted club survives its first season in the Premier League.

On Tuesday 4 August, Brentford and Fulham will go head to head in the most valuable match in world football. According to analysis from Deloitte’s Sports Business Group, promotion to the Premier League for either club will see an increase in revenue of at least c.£135m, rising to c.£265m if they avoid relegation in their first season in the Premier League.

Dan Jones, partner and head of the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, commented: “This season’s Championship has been temporarily interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, however as the season comes to a close, all eyes will be on Wembley in what still remains world footballs biggest financial, winner-takes-all, prize match.

“Despite the disruption to the season, the league has remained extremely competitive at the top-end of the table, and yet again the Play-Off semi-finals have provided supporters and neutral football fans with excellent entertainment.”

This year’s Play-Off final sees Fulham, who are looking to regain a place in the Premier League after being relegated at the end of the 2018/19 season, and Brentford, who are seeking to play in the top flight for the first time in 73 years.

Brentford would benefit more significantly from the win, alongside champions Leeds, due to the fact they do not currently receive Premier League parachute payments. Fulham are currently in receipt of parachute payments, following relegation in 2019, therefore forgoing any future payments upon promotion to the Premier League.

As a result, Brentford and Leeds can expect a minimum revenue uplift of c.£160m over three years, if relegated from the Premier League after just one season. This is a combination of extra revenue they will earn from playing in the Premier League in 2020/21 (at least an extra c.£85m, mostly from central broadcast distributions) and parachute payments in 2021/22 and 2022/23 should they be relegated in 2021 (totalling c.£75m across the two seasons*). Given that Fulham would forego a second parachute payment if promoted to the Premier League for 2020/21, their minimum revenue uplift would be c.£135m.

Promoted clubs surviving their first season in the Premier League could see this figure rise to at least c.£265m, from a second season of Premier League football alongside the guarantee of a third year of parachute payments.
In the last 10 seasons to 2018/19, 19 (63%) of the 30 clubs promoted to the Premier League have avoided relegation in their first season. Last season was the first in five years where the Championship winners did not avoid first-year relegation.

Tim Bridge, director in Deloitte’s Sports Business Group, added: “The financial prize for Brentford or Fulham, as well as Leeds United and West Bromwich Albion, is likely to be in excess of £265m if they survive their first season in the Premier League. Furthermore, given the recent impact of COVID-19, it is likely that the financial impact of promotion will be better received than ever before. The increased revenue provides these clubs with the platform from which they can develop on and off the pitch.”

Bridge adds: “Promotion to the Premier League provides clubs with the financial resources to make strategic investments. While this typically includes increased expenditure in on-pitch playing talent, it still remains important that promoted clubs are committed to their longer-term financial responsibility.”


* This assumes that the next cycle of Premier League broadcast rights, due to commence at the start of the 2022/23 season, deliver at least the same value as the current rights cycle.

About the Sports Business Group at Deloitte
Over the last 25 years Deloitte has developed a unique focus on the business of sport. Our specialist Sports Business Group offers a multi-disciplined expert service with dedicated people and skills capable of adding significant value to the business of sport. Whether it is benchmarking or strategic business reviews, operational turnarounds, revenue enhancement strategies or stadium/venue development plans, business planning, market and demand analysis, acquisitions, due diligence, expert witness, audits or tax planning; we have worked with more clubs, leagues, governing bodies, stadia developers, event organisers, commercial partners, financiers and investors than any other adviser.

For further information on our services you can access our website at

About Deloitte
In this press release references to “Deloitte” are references to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”) a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity.

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Deloitte LLP is a subsidiary of Deloitte NSE LLP, which is a member firm of DTTL, and is among the UK's leading professional services firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

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