Manchester United have welcomed a report outlining the “enormous” benefits Premier League clubs have brought to Greater Manchester and the North West of England.
Premier League clubs generated £2.1 billion for the North West economy during the 2019/20 season and £1.1 billion for Greater Manchester, according to a study by consultancy EY. Support 21,000 jobs.
Colette Roche, Manchester United’s chief operating officer, said the results confirmed the positive impact of football on the regional economy, with United at the fore.
“We are proud of the contribution our club is making to the economy and society in Greater Manchester and beyond, not only as a major visitor attraction, but also as a major employer, with a permanent workforce of over 900 people, numbering in the thousands match days.
“It is great to see these benefits recognized, together with the work of the Manchester United Foundation in creating opportunities for the youngsters of Greater Manchester.
“This report shows the positive force of the Premier League and football in general in the life of our region.”
Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham echoed Roche, who said United and neighboring Manchester City had a “wide range of benefits” for their communities.
“The city’s image has been greatly enhanced by the prestige of my two football teams in the Premier League. As mayor of Greater Manchester, whenever I travel abroad the first question I often ask is what is going on at United or City.”
Burnham said that along with regional neighbors Liverpool and Everton, Manchester clubs are helping to “raise the profile” of northwest England.
“You know, we are the main force in the Premier League, and I would say North West England, perhaps more than anywhere else, have built the Premier League for what it is.”
Burnham praised the “enormous impact” of both Manchester clubs on disadvantaged youth and local residents through the Manchester United Foundation and City in the Community.
“The Manchester United Foundation is doing a great job and they are very focused on opportunities for young people. I have also seen how Manchester clubs have progressed during the pandemic. We know it has had a huge impact in terms of holding back some youngsters and the clubs have worked hard to help them get back on the right track.”
Burnham also highlighted the inspiring role played by United’s Marcus Rashford in the campaign against food poverty, and City’s Raheem Sterling against racism.
“This is something everyone in football should be proud of, we now have a generation of players who are ready to use their voices the way they do.”
An EY report, commissioned by the Premier League, showed that the Premier League contributed £7.6 billion to the British economy during the 2019/20 season, despite being suspended for more than three months due to the pandemic.
The League and its clubs made a total tax contribution of £3.6 billion to the UK chessboard in 2019/20, of which £1.4 billion came directly from Premier League players.
Nearly three-quarters of the Premier League’s economic impact has been outside London, with the North West being the main beneficiary.
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