A massive 36% of Celtic’s revenue in 2018 was made up from ticket income, a UEFA study published earlier this year showed.
That’s more than any of the other clubs in the European top 20 when it comes to gate receipts.
As we consider what impact the ongoing public health crisis will have on Celtic and Scottish football, it’s important to know just how reliant we are on the money that supporters pay through the turnstiles at stadiums across the country.
UEFA’s Club Licensing Benchmarking report showed that in the financial year ending 2018, Celtic earned a whopping €42m across 32 home matches in that period.
That works out at around £1.13m per match using today’s exchange rate.
According to the UEFA study, it’s a total equalling 36% of our overall revenue, far higher than the average across the top 20, which stands at 20%.
Scotland-wide the proportion of ticket cash to overall revenue is a massive 43%, way beyond other major footballing nations. The next highest in the top 20 is Switzerland, at 31%.
It all underlines the unique circumstances facing the game here over the next six months and beyond.
Matches have been cancelled until at least June, with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon warning that public events will not return for ‘some months to come’ (Edinburgh Evening News).
Even when football does return, matches being played behind closed doors is a possibility as social distancing measures are expected to continue even when the current lockdown lessens in severity.
This is going to have an even bigger impact on Celtic and Scottish clubs than it will on leagues across the continent.
The TV deal that Scottish football enjoys will be at a record value next season, but will it be enough to sustain football when crowds aren’t paying through the gate?
That’s likely what the powers that be are currently considering right now with the possibility of airing further matches live via a pay service reportedly on the cards (The Scottish Sun).
Make no mistake, clubs will have to come together to get through this rather than be divided and innovative solutions will have to be sought.