United will bank £34million (39m euros) from UEFA compared to £30.4m (35.1m euros) last season, but if Sir Alex Ferguson’s side had gone all the way to the final they could have expected to top the £56million mark (65m euros).
The financial implications are not limited to media income from UEFA, however. A victory in the Champions League can also trigger sponsorship bonuses and increase the commercial value of a team.
When merchandise and gate money is taken into account, analysts believe that Champions League winners can effectively match the sum they will earn from UEFA.
Even in terms of the television money and bonuses from UEFA, the value of getting to the final is huge – Chelsea, who beat Bayern Munich to win the competition last year, received £51.7m from the European competition organiser and allowed the club to record a small profit for the first time in the Roman Abramovich era.
United’s comparative failure last season saw the club’s revenues fall for the first time since the Glazers’ takeover.