Manchester United have regained their status as the world’s most popular football club by sales of official replica shirts according to authoritative new research.

The Old Trafford club sold an average of 1.75m shirts per year in the five-season period from 2011-12 to 2015-16 inclusive.

That puts them in the No1 spot in European football – and the world. The data has been compiled by industry insider Dr Peter Rohlmann and his team at the consulting bureau, PR Marketing, and is published for the first time by Sportingintelligence today.

Real Madrid are No2 in the list, averaging 1.65m shirts per year in the period under review ahead of Barcelona in third, Bayern Munich in fourth and Chelsea in fifth.


There is major financial significance in being able to shift huge amounts of official merchandise. The more gear a club can sell, the more money a manufacturer will pay to be an official kit supplier.

Chelsea confirmed their new £900m, 15-year deal with Nike last week, for example, equating to a contract worth £60m a year. United have a deal with adidas worth £75m a year, while the Spanish giants of Real and Barca both have new deals worth around £100m a year. That quartet beat everyone else by some distance.

Dr Rohlmann is a veteran analyst who has authored a number of in-depth studies into kit supply deals and T shirts sales by Europe’s elite clubs. This website carried an earlier study for the 5-year period 2007 to 2012 in October 2012 here.

By 2014, Real Madrid’s growth had edged just ahead of United’s, putting Real into the No1 spot as both clubs sold more each year, but United’s growth has taken a spurt and they are back at the top in the latest analysis. Just four clubs have had annual average sales of more than one million shirts per year over a five-year period.

It is worth noting however:

a: Dr Rohlmann counts sales of official genuine replica club shirts. Counterfeits and copies are not part of these totals. Methodology is not always clear in other studies.

b: A five-year period of data is seen as vital to overall accuracy as most clubs’ sales will ebb and flow dependent on success and signings, although individual players are often not as influential in sales as some claim.

c: While the replica shirt is the most obvious and visible piece of merchandise that a manufacturer will monetise from their commercial relationship with a club, there will typically be many dozens of other lines of clothing and apparel where money is made as part of the same contract. So, for example, Adidas selling almost 2 million Manchester United football shirts in a year at around £50 each is far from the whole story of that company’s revenue from United. Millions of other items from shorts and socks to hats, bags, training gear, tops, coats and other accessories – often even more expensive than a shirt – are also shifted annually.

Aside from United moving back to the top spot, the other major movers in recent years have been Bayern Munich, PSG, Dortmund and Manchester City moving up the shirt sales rankings as they have returned to global prominence or gained it for the first time. The Italian giants of Milan and Inter are among the fallers as their fortunes have waned.

Chelsea football shirts sale Arsenal and Tottenham but Manchester United tops charts


Chelsea have finished top of the league for London clubs in football shirt sales – shipping almost 900,000 a season.

The Blues have been the capital’s most successful club in the past decade and that silverware has seen them pip rivals Arsenal.

Since 2011 Chelsea have sold an average of 899,000 shirts a year, while the Gunners sold 835,000, according to new research by industry analyst Dr Peter Rohlmann.

Those figures put the London clubs as the fifth and seventh most successful across Europe.

Tottenham are way back in 15th, with 268,000 shirt sales per year.

But all three pale into comparison with Manchester United, who sold 1.75m, and Real Madrid, who sold 1.65m, between 2011 and 2016.

How gambling and betting companies have taken over the year’s Premier League football shirts


More Premier League teams are sponsored by bank companies than anytime afore this season, with absolutely bisected of the division’s teams announcement logos for online casinos or bookmakers on their cheap football shirts.

England’s top bank was 10 years old afore Fulham became the aboriginal club to affection a action aggregation on their shirt by bond up with Betfair in the 2002/03 season.

In the years since, the online action industry has exploded and is now represented added heavily on Premier League shirts than any added industry in any antecedent season.


Football shirts sale online bank companies, adequate the allowances of alteration bettor behaviour, were freed to plough money into announcement their brands by the 2005 Bank Act, which fabricated bank commercial on TV acknowledged for both UK and adopted bank companies.

As a result, industry commercial grew by 1,400 per cent amid 2005 and 2012 according to Ofcom.

FA bandy abroad £25,000 account of t-shirts and cards with Sam Allardyce quotes


The Football Association accept had to bin 4,000 t-shirts they had planned to accord to admirers for England’s next bold at home to Malta because they affection a Sam Allardyce quote.

Organisers had planned to accomplish a admirable action as the 61-year-old able for his aboriginal bold at Wembley by handing out shirts printed with the byword ‘The adventure starts with us all affairs together’ – a adduce from Allardyce’s aboriginal day in the job.

He said at the time: “I can about-face things about appealing bound and get amidst teams to try to actualize a acknowledged adventure and a acknowledged adventure starts with all of us affairs together.”

A army circuitous of coloured cards that was aswell planned for the break has now aswell been scrapped, with both bootless gestures costing the FA about £25,000.

There was added embarrassment for the FA on Thursday if it was appear all associates of Allardyce’s aboriginal band that won in Slovakia 1-0 were beatific a postcard which read: “Our adventure has just begun. Looking advanced to seeing you soon.”

The cards were beatific out afore the above Sunderland bang-up accommodated from his column as England administrator afterward bi-weekly allegations he was advising affected businessmen on how to get about FA alteration rules on third-party ownership.