When Juventus forked out a whopping £99.3 million for ageless Cristiano Ronaldo in the 2018 summer, the club was certain it was conducting one of its best transfer in years. The Old Lady went for the big man who had succeeded in Manchester and Madrid; his winning mentality at the highest level was missing at a club that had dominated the local scene in the last seven years before his arrival.
The Turin based club are rebranding; a change in the club crest, the ambition is to dominate beyond the shores of Italy but that has eluded them having played two Champions League finals in 2015 and 2017. The arrival of Ronaldo is a part of the new Juventus and the effect of the Portuguese captain has been felt on and off the field.
On the field, the 34-year-old scored 28 goals in 43 appearances in his first season in Turin; the five-time Champions League couldn’t lead his team to the finals but his goals propelled them as far as the last eight. He played a pivotal role in Juventus winning the eight consecutive Scudetto and delivered with goals in virtually all the big matches played including the Supercoppa Italiana winner. The hat-trick in the Champions League Round of 16 second leg tie against Atletico Madrid was probably the highest point of his maiden season – it was for nights like that that Ronaldo was brought to Juve.
Off the pitch; Juventus released their financial statements for the year ending 30 June, 2019 last Friday with the club announcing a record turnover of €621.5m last season but also recorded a loss of €39.9m. The financial statement can be tagged – the cost of Ronaldo; they posted revenues of €621.5m which was €116.8m more than the previous year – but also losses of €39.9m, an increase of €20.7m. The figures confirm the Old Lady’s turnover rose by 23 percent, whereas their losses doubled.
The 2018-19 financial year is the first since Ronaldo’s arrival from Real Madrid 14 months ago. His €112m transfer was largely accountable for a significant increase in the cost of registered personnel, from €233.3m in 17-18 to €301.3m in 18-19. That is represented by the Portuguese’s €31m net salary, which works out to around €54.24m in gross terms. Amortisation additionally rose from €107.9m to €149.4m, with €28.8m of that increase attributed to just Ronaldo. Calcio e Finanza puts down the total cost of the No 7’s impact on Juve’s finances at €83.1m, just over half (€46.29m) of which is cancelled out by the revenues he has helped attract. The Bianconeri’s net financial debt has gone up to €463.5m from €309.8m.
Cristiano’s impact is even more monumental; his arrival has had a positive effect on Juventus and Serie A as a brand and some of the results are pretty incredible. It was reported that Juventus sold 520,000 Cristiano Ronaldo shirts within the first 24 hours of him signing for the club, so it’s no surprise to learn that the Old Lady’s kit sold out in just one month, while Adidas have seen an improvement in the amount of Juventus shirt sales across Europe. Juve’s social media experienced a huge 30 per cent increase. The club’s Instagram account gained 10 million followers, while YouTube had a whopping 136 per cent boost. Their Twitter account has also seen big progress, with a 10.73 per cent (more than 600,000 users) increase but it is on Facebook where business really picked up – three million new people liked the page to bring Juve’s follower count to just short of 37 million over on the American online social media.
Juventus’ average attendance has gone up by 4.54 per cent, while Serie’s A overall attendance numbers have improved by 2.30 per cent. That’s what you get with Ronaldo because his brand and image is unrivalled.
The big man continues to produce the goods for the Old Lady. Under new coach Maurizio Sarri, he set to play an important role and he rescued his team in a nervy win on Saturday by scoring the winning goal in the league victory over Hellas Verona from the spot. The Bianconeri travel to Lombardy on Tuesday to face Brescia Calcio in their next league game.
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