Barnsley FC: Loss of Oakwell fans behind £4.2m deficit

BARNSLEY have announced a loss of £4.2m in their latest accounts filed via Companies House for the last financial year ending on May 31, 2021.

A club’s strategic report states that the ‘principal risks and uncertainties’ going forward are the impact of relegation upon revenue streams and ‘cash management within the constraints of available working capital’ alongside the continuation of Covid.

It also cites that ‘impairment of player registration values and onerous player contracts resulting from loss of form or long-term injury’ is also another factor for uncertainty.

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The deficit compares with a modest loss of £280,000 in the previous financial year.

The lack of fans at Oakwell contributed towards a loss of £4.2m for Barnsley. Picture: Bruce Rollinson

The impact of playing the entire 2020-21 regular season behind closed doors was cited as the biggest reason in the seven-figure loss.

The accounts revealed that the club suffered a reduction in matchday income of £1.6m with season-ticket sales falling by £650,000.

Revenue fell by 14 per cent to £12.5m – again largely due to the impact of Covid – while wage costs rose 22 per cent to £14.3m from the 2019-20 figure of £11.1m.

That was partly down to bonuses paid out following the successful 2020-21 campaign.

The accounts also revealed that the club claimed £2.8m in furlough costs, with the club also applying for and securing a £3.6m loan from the English Football League which was available for member clubs to pay taxes during the season affected by Covid.

Barnsley received cash of £7.9m from transfer fee instalments in 2020-21. Additionally, it was revealed in the accounts that Barnsley owed around £1.5m in transfer fee instalments to other clubs and were owed a similar amount themselves from clubs following player sales.

On the pitch, Barnsley are preparing for Saturday’s huge six-pointer at relegation rivals Derby.

The English Football League remain “deeply concerned” at the lack of “substantial progress” regarding the crisis-hit Rams naming a preferred bidder or providing proof of funding for the rest of the season.

In a statement, the governing body said that it continues to threaten “the very future of Derby County”.