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Thursday, April 22, 1999 Published at 13:24 GMT 14:24 UK

Business: The Company File

Gold Trafford

Dwight Yorke: Jumping for joy at the mouth-watering money prospect

Manchester United's coffers are primed for an injection of millions of extra pounds following their dramatic victory over Juventus in the Champions League semi-final.

It means the club is still on for a remarkable and unprecedented treble of English league championship, FA Cup and, of course, European Champions League trophy.

The club's already buoyant merchandising arm faces a busy time.

One football analyst says if Manchester United beat Bayern Munich in the Champions League final it could mean up to £10m worth of sales of replica shirts and other club goods.

Cash cascade

[ image: Andy Cole: Head over heels at the prospect of a richer employer]
Andy Cole: Head over heels at the prospect of a richer employer
William Davies, a football industry analyst with fund managers Capel Cure Sharp, said: "Those figures could be maintained in the years to come if they keep up that level of success, not necessarily winning the competition again, but reaching the later stages, if they win it this year."

United currently lead the Premier League and face Newcastle United in the FA Cup Final at Wembley.

"The brand enhancement which would follow an achievement such as winning that unique treble would be massive," Mr Davies said.

At the close of London's markets on Thursday, the club's shares were up 2.5p at 205p.

Euro cash

Victory in the European final would also bring in £2m in prize money. Winning the final means £400,000 more than coming second.

And all this beckons for a club which only two months ago was named as the richest football club in the world in a survey by Deloitte and Touche and a British football magazine.

The survey found that Manchester Utd achieved turnover of £87.9m for the 1996-7 financial year, almost £30m ahead of second-placed Barcelona.

The bulk of Manchester United's income comes from commercial and marketing activities and its attendances at matches are smaller than second-placed Barcelona and third-placed Real Madrid.

Last month, though, United reported a drop in first-half profits despite good revenue growth. Pre-tax profits fell 28% from £15.4m to £11.1m in the six months to 31 January after a series of one-off expenses.

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