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    Substantial Salaries and Expensive Entertainment- The Price of the Premier League

    Last Saturday evening witnessed four of the biggest clubs in World football collide in two separate matches at venues based in cities rich in the culture and history of our beloved game. One of the most decorated clubs in English football history, Liverpool, visited a team who have been developing their own success stories in recent years, Manchester City. Whilst these two Premier League giants met at the Etihad Stadium, one of the greatest rivalries in football was taking place between Barcelona and Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu in the Spanish capital.

    The average weekly salary of the 44 starters in those two games worked out at £87,884.75. Give it a fortnight and that would be just enough to purchase a three bedroom house. Each player, on average, would be earning £505.20 per hour, or £8.20 per minute. The figures speak for themselves yet, although these four sides are all in the top 15 salary spenders in World football, a similar trend runs throughout the Premier League in particular.

    According to last season's statistics produced by the Global Sports Salaries Survey, the average Premier League player earns £42,872.40. That works out as £255.19 per hour, or £4.25 per minute. A Premier League player could play anywhere between one and three games a week depending on cup fixtures and international matches. If we take the middle ground and assume they play around two matches per week during the season, with the average player managing 77 touches per game, they are getting paid around £278.39 per touch of the ball.

    Looking from another angle, the average annual salary in the United Kingdom is £26,500. The average Premier League player would earn this in just over four days. Fans around the country work hard during the week and spend their wages week in, week out to watch their beloved clubs. The BBC's survey into the Price of Football revealed that the average price of the cheapest category matchday ticket in the Premier League is just over £30. That's almost half a days work for the average worked in the country. For Premier League players it would be just seven minutes graft, or a little bit longer than making a cup of tea.

    Perhaps more worrying for the the authorities in Premier League football is how their clubs are performing in European competitions compared to their rivals across the continent. Seven Premier League clubs spend more on wages than 2014 Champions League finalists Athletico Madrid, whilst 13 of our English clubs spend more than Europa League winners from the same season, Sevilla. Taking into account the Premier League is the most expensive football to watch in the World, our fans seem to be receiving a bad deal, whilst the players will be laughing all the way to the banks. 

    Yet despite the bad press football gets for its astronomical wages, there are still three sports leagues that pay players more than our Premier League clubs do. Basketball's NBA, cricket's Indian Premier League and baseball's MLB all have higher annual salaries than the beautiful game in this country. However, eight of the top ten salary spending sports teams are football clubs, with France's PSG leading the way. 

    So why do we continue to pay expensive prices to watch 90 minutes of football? The unpredictability. Not many people would have expected Barcelona to hammer Real Madrid 4-0 on their own patch and even less would have predicted Liverpool to run out 4-1 winners at Manchester City. Is there any better entertainment in the World?

    Article by Chris Lincoln
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    Item Reviewed: Substantial Salaries and Expensive Entertainment- The Price of the Premier League Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Chris Lincoln
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