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How close Bristol City were to failing Financial Fair Play rules

Bristol City nearly failed Financial Fair Play rules last season, Swiss Ramble, a leading online football finance expert, has said. Swiss Ramble in its analysis of Bristol City’s finances on Tuesday after the club released its standing financial status said the English side made losses of £47m over the last three-year period – an amount higher than the legally approved £39m target.

The Robin’s escape route links to the approval given to clubs to invest into their infrastructure including their community and academy activities with an estimated £12m. These approvals allowed the club to spend around the £35m mark – an amount under the crucial £39m target.

“As the accounts state, #BristolCity is dependent on funding from Lansdown, the co-founder of financial services firm Hargreaves Lansdown. I estimate that he has put in around £134m to date (capital £114m, loan £20m) with little sign of the need for this funding going away.

#BristolCity have £47m losses over the 3-year FFP monitoring period, but estimated £12m allowable deductions for academy, community and infrastructure take their FFP losses to £35m, which is just within the £39m target.

“There was a substantial increase in #BristolCity loss before tax from £6.6m to £25.3m, despite revenue increasing £4.7m (22%) to £26m, mainly due to profit on player sales falling by £13.3m to just £0.3m and wages rising by £6.4m (30%) to £27.3m. Swiss Ramble tweeted on Tuesday.

The analysis from Swiss Ramble is coming weeks after football finance specialist Kieran Maguire said Bristol City might be facing tough challenges. The club’s account for this season is likely to swell as it has gained an estimated £23m from the sale of Bobby Reid, Joe Bryan Aden Flint last summer.

 

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