Manchester United have revealed reduced revenue and profit for the first quarter of 2019.
The club generated £135m in revenue for the period up until 30 September, which is 6.1 per cent down on the same time last year.
The club says the fall can largely be attributed to reduced sponsorship revenue, as a result of a smaller summer tour, and reduced match-day revenue, as a result of playing fewer home games.
Furthermore, United have only played one home game in the Champions League during the period in question, as opposed to two during the same time last year, which has resulted in up to a £10m reduction in broadcast revenue.
United’s wages have also risen 10.2 per cent on last year, largely due to the signings of Alexis Sanchez, Diogo Dalot and Fred, as well as the new contracts agreed with Luke Shaw and Marouane Fellaini.
As a result, United’s operating profit for the quarter is £13.9m, 22.3 per cent lower than in the same period last year.
However, there is good news for United in that their net debt has fallen by 7.8 per cent, although it does still stand at £247.2m.
Despite the falling revenue and profit, United still predict record revenues of between £615m and £630m across the whole year.
United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward was positive about the figures, and said the club’s “financial strength” will allow the club to invest in the first team and the academy.
He said: “Our financial strength enables us to continue to attract and retain top players and to invest in our academy, as we look to drive the success on the pitch that the club and our fans expect.
“We remain on track to deliver our record full-year revenue guidance, underpinning our long-term, strategic plan to create sustainable growth across all areas of the club.”
In a conference call with stakeholders, Woodward added: “The squad and manager are fully united in their aim to gain momentum in the Premier League.”