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In light of the fact that anyone who wants to watch Euro 2012 games has to pay UEFA (either pay directly through pay-for-view, or pay indirectly though the cable company), I am interested in knowing where this money goes.

I've been recently told that this money is not used to pay for the expenses of organizing football games (building stadiums, etc.), and the cities that host the games pay these expenses.

What does UEFA financially contribute to football that justifies the huge profits it makes by selling the broadcasting rights of the games?

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    I think it is worse for the Olympics. – Bernhard Jun 17 '12 at 14:47
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UEFA's finance report for 2010/2011 shows exactly where their income originated from, and what they spent it on;

They summarise that football related income largely originates from;

  • broadcasting rights
  • commercial and licensing rights
  • ticket sales
  • hospitality sales
  • other football-related revenue: fines, FIFA contributions

However, football-related expenses includes;

  • distributions to the participating teams - Don't forget this one! This cost them a total of €1,000,589,000 in 2010/11!
  • direct contributions to local organising committees (LOC)
  • agency commissions
  • various costs incurred during events such as technical and audiovisual equipment and other material
  • rights-delivery costs such as signage, event promotion and rights protection expenses
  • direct costs related to hospitality and TV production
  • ICT expenses such as IT projects in the football and event domains
  • match officials such as referees and delegates, as well as related expenses (travel, accommodation and allowances)

Of course like any big organisation, they have running expenses as well which include;

  • salaries
  • travel expenses
  • marketing
  • rent, building maintenance and security

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