Aberdeen announce £5.29m loss - team investment, steady recovery, managerial change, Hearts and Hibs challenge

Aberdeen have revealed they are making a steady recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic despite posting an operating loss of £5.29 million for the year ended June 30 2022, an increase of £100,000.

The Dons have brought turnover up to £13.86million, a increase of £2.79million from the previous year, while they invested further in the playing squad, the women's team, continued to develop plans for a new stadium, engaged with fans and the local community through various initiatives and also changed management team with Jim Goodwin replacing Stephen Glass.

A key investment has been on the playing squad. Nearly £1million was added to the wage bill taking it to £10.23million, while around £2million was spent on transfer fees, including a six-figure sum on Vicente Besuijen who arrived in January. The majority of the other players signed for money arrived after the accounting period. It also means, the substantial fees received for the sales of Calvin Ramsay and Lewis Ferguson will make up next year’s accounts.

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“The club’s wages to turnover ratio is still high at 74% because we have continued to invest in the first team," chairman Dave Cormack said. “We are now spending around 80 per cent more on our guaranteed player wage bill, compared to five years ago. But this ensures we remain competitive with other clubs, such as Hibs and Hearts, who are also making significant investments.

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“To balance the books, we are developing and acquiring talent which, at the right time, we can monetise through player sales, as we did this summer with the sale of Lewis Ferguson to Bologna in August and Calvin Ramsay to Liverpool in July.

“Ending the season in a very disappointing tenth place in the league, it was clear that a significant overhaul of the playing squad was needed. As a result, in this summer’s transfer window, ten first team players left the club with eleven coming in. This re-build was largely made possible by experienced EPL scout, Darren Mowbray, who was appointed head of recruitment in August 2021.”

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Youth investment

Aberdeen view the academy as an area of growth. The new training park costs £800,000 a year to run but it has already reaped dividends. It is an avenue the club will continue to focus on with a number of homegrown players part of Goodwin’s first-team squad.

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Aberdeen have posted their accounts for the year ended June 30 2022.. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)

Cormack said: “Whilst there’s no getting away from a poor 2021/22 season, an important and critical part of our strategy is being one of the best developers of young talent in Scotland, underpinned by our Youth Academy. In 2021/22 all academy age groups travelled to and competed in elite European youth tournaments. This massive logistical and financial commitment is critical to exposing young, developing players to elite level competition with the likes of Ajax, Liverpool and Chelsea at an early age.

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“The board believes we have the right football strategy and management team in place, and that we’ve made the right investments in young talent. While first team performance is critical, there has been significant progress on the key pillars of our strategy, such as the youth academy, growing our commercial income, and fan engagement.

“Off the pitch, we have been highly successful with increased commercial revenues, improved match-day experience and fan engagement initiatives."

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