Liverpool's record-breaking success – on and off the pitch – has given them the financial muscle to match the biggest payers in world football.
And that will see the financial commitment to keeping stars like Mo Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino, who all got huge new pay deals in the last year, extended to the most coveted defender on the globe, Virgil van Dijk.
The Anfield club released their year end results up until May 31 2019, and it showed a record level of revenues from TV, commercial and stadium income.
But profits before tax were more than halved on the previous year to just £42m, because the club’s board reinvested the huge revenues – with turnover up year on year by £78m to a record level of £533m – in improved player salaries to keep the best players on Merseyside.
A club statement said that Liverpool had made a bold statement by investing in player recruitment and retainment at Anfield. “Alisson, Keita, Fabinho and Shaqiri all signed for LFC, “ it read.
“The first team squad was further reinforced with 11 players renewing their contracts including the Club captain Jordan Henderson, Firmino, Salah, Mane, Robertson and Alexander-Arnold.”
And chief operating officer Andy Hughes explained that such investment doesn’t come cheap in a market which is dominated by big spenders such as Real Madrid , Barcelona and Manchester United .
“The underlying financial sustainability of the Club is enabling us to make significant investments both in player recruitment and infrastructure,” he said.
“Being able to reinvest over £220m on players during this financial period is a result of a successful business strategy, particularly the significant uplift in commercial revenues.
“The cost of football however does continue to rise in transfers and associated fees but what’s critical for us is the consistency of our financial position, enabling us to live within our means and continue to run a sustainable football club.”
Liverpool now have the third highest wage bill in the Premier League, and with Van Dijk due to get a new contract in the summer – which could make him the highest paid defender in world football – costs will rise once more.
Boss Jurgen Klopp has also signed a new extended contract which will be felt in next year’s financial results, and the club are also making big efforts to sign their brightest stars of the future on long contracts.
Teenager Harvey Elliott will sign a three year contract in the summer, after he turns 17, which will keep him at the club until 2023 – but the Reds will also hope to extend that further on his 18th birthday.
Another rising star Curtis Jones is also likely to get improved terms, which shows Liverpool’s commitment to the future.
And Hughes added: “These financial results and this sustained period of solid growth is testament to our ownership, Fenway Sport Group, who continue to support the Club’s ambitions and continue to reinvest revenues both in strengthen the playing squad and the Club’s infrastructure to build for the future.”
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