Barcelona have overtaken rivals Real Madrid in having the largest wage budget in La Liga, according to data released this week. According to the numbers from the Spanish league, the money available for Barca’s bills are up to €507million.
Their main title rivals, Real, meanwhile have a cap on overall salaries that comes in at €199m, or £442m – making it the first time since the introduction of centralised TV rights in Spain that Barca can outspend the Bernabeu side.
The data comes from strict La Liga measures to prevent clubs from overspending on wages. The caps, which are made public each season in September, are linked to the total income of each club.
The budget covers the wages of players and coaching staff.
A large chunk of Barcelona’s increased budget has also been freed up by no longer having one of the world’s leading and most expensive players – Neymar – on their books.
Neymar, who was on around £26.5m a year at the Nou Camp, left for PSG in the summer in a world record €220m move.
In each of the last two seasons, Real have had the bigger budgets – in 2016-17, Zinedine Zidane’s team had a cap of €419m, compared to Barca’s €390m.
In 2015-16, Real could spend up to €431m, with the Catalan giants on €421m.
Elsewhere in the division, Atletico Madrid’s growth is reflected in them having notably increased wage pulling power for this campaign.
Their upped budget reflects the fact Diego Simeone’s side have become major contenders both domestically and in Europe, reaching the Champions League final in 2014 and 2016, as well as winning La La Liga in 2014.
In 2015 their wage cap was set at €159m which was around a third of Real and Barca; but is now up to €237m, nearly half the budgets of the big two.
Two other clubs break the nine-figure barrier, with Sevilla’s Champions League qualification reflected in their cap, while underachieving Valencia still have £100m available to spend.
The third Madrid side in La Liga, Getafe, have the smallest La Liga budget meanwhile at £25m – Barca’s cap is nearly 18 times larger.
LA LIGA WAGE CAPS
- Barcelona: £448m
- Real Madrid: £442m
- Atletico Madrid: £210m
- Sevilla: £141m
- Valencia: £100m
- Villareal: £78m
- Athletic Bilbao: £60m
- Real Betis: £58m
- Real Sociedad: £57m
- Espanyol: £54m
- Malaga: £47m
- Celta Vigo: £36m
- Deportivo: £36m
- Alaves: £33m
- Leganes: £30m
- Eibar: £29m
- Levante: £28m
- Girona: £27m
- Las Palmas: £26m
- Getafe: £25m