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Tuesday, 26 May, 1998, 21:22 GMT 22:22 UK
Sunderland pays price of missed penalty
Charlton goalkeeper Sasa Ilic saved Michael Gray's penalty shot
Charlton goalkeeper Sasa Ilic saved Michael Gray's penalty shot
Around 10m has been wiped off the value of Sunderland football club after it narrowly failed to win promotion into the Premiership.

The club's share price collapsed to around 390p from Friday's close of 512.5p in the wake of Monday's First Division play-off at Wembley against Charlton Athletic.

Kevin Phillips put Sunderland in front, and broke Brian Clough's scoring record
Kevin Phillips put Sunderland in front, and broke Brian Clough's scoring record
Charlton won the game after a 7-6 penalty shoot-out when, after extra time, the score stood at 4-4.

Promotion into English football's top flight would have been worth millions of pounds to the North East team but now Charlton will gain instead - at one point this morning its shares had risen 17.5p to 82.5p.

Clubs entering English football's top flight can look forward to a boost in their turnover worth around 7m thanks to money from satellite broadcaster BSkyB.

But the top 20 teams also have to contend with substantial increases in their outgoings, so extra cash is no guarantee of a rise in profitability.

Only six Premiership teams made a pre-tax profit in the 96-97 season.

Cashing in on the big time

Nottingham Forest, Middlesbrough and now Charlton are set to win more than TV money next season.

Premiership clubs can also gain from higher ticket sales as 2,000 extra season tickets at 500 apiece is worth 1m to their coffers.

There are also extra opportunities for merchandising thanks to the high national profile of teams in the top league.

This was demonstrated recently when Forest signed up Edward Freedman, who increased Manchester United's merchandising turnover from 2.7m to 28.7m, to oversee its brand-building strategy.

But Richard Baldwin, a partner with accountants Deloitte & Touche who specialises in the football business, said several factors were at work which could eat up much of the extra cash.

Charlton Athletic: On top of the world
Charlton Athletic: On top of the world
Players re-negotiating their contracts could demand significant increases in salary while ground policing costs could escalate too as Premiership clubs play host to more big games.

"You're going to have more big all-ticket matches with more police presence, but the principal rise is players' salaries," he said.

The importance of promotion to a team's business performance is well illustrated by how its results can affect its share price.

Three stock market-quoted clubs - Sunderland, Sheffield United and Charlton - were involved in the First Division play-off semi-finals.

Sunderland's victory over Sheffield and what proved to be the vain hope of promotion helped its shares rise to around 512.5p, up from a season low of 347.5p, although this is still well below its flotation price of 585p.

Sheffield in contrast has slumped to around 28p since being knocked out of contention, half its float price of 60p.

Before Monday's game, Charlton - considered by many as one of the weaker football stocks when it floated - enjoyed a rise from a year low of 48.5p to trade in the region of 65p.

This followed its 2-0 aggregate victory against Ipswich in the other play-off semi-final.

See also:

21 Mar 98 | Football
Dutch destroyer rescues Forest
10 May 98 | Football
Own goal gives Charlton victory
28 Apr 98 | Football
Promotion battle goes to the wire
03 May 98 | Football
Middlesbrough back in Premiership
25 May 98 | Football
Charlton clinch nail-biter
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