15 Dec 2012

Man City halve loss

11:22 am on 15 December 2012

English Premier League football champions Manchester City have halved their annual losses to $187 million in 2011-12 after winning the top-flight title for the first time since 1968.

The club, bankrolled by Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, a member of Abu Dhabi's ruling family, had racked up a deficit of $377 million the previous year, the highest recorded in British football.

Despite remaining deep in the red, City says they're well placed to meet new financial fair play rules being introduced by UEFA to force clubs to clean up their balance sheets or risk exclusion from European competition.

Record revenue of $441 million, an increase of more than 50 percent, helped City to rein in their losses in a season when they pipped local rivals Manchester United to the Premier League title.

The value of a new 10-year sponsorship agreement with Etihad Airways, the national airline of Abu Dhabi, was illustrated by a doubling of commercial revenue to $185 million.

However, City's annual revenue fell short of the $611 million generated by United last season.

City, whose players include Argentina's Carlos Tevez and Yaya Toure of the Ivory Coast, spent more than $382 million on wages and related staff costs last season.