Manchester United players are more valuable on Football Index. Is it because of their PB? Is it because of their youth? Perhaps. But the ultimate reason is their media presence.
United are the most regularly documented, highest-followed team in England. This means their Media Buzz is huge. It’s rare that a day passes and a United player is not in the papers. Journalists write what readers want. So clubs with the largest following, interest and controversy are headline material. And headline material means buzz.
The debate surrounding ‘biggest club in the world’ is largely opinionated, though a matrix established by France Football last year set out to determine a data-driven answer to this eternal question – check out the rankings here:
In short, it statistically addressed the question 'Who's the biggest club?' and found United are the biggest club in England, and third in the world. Football Index monitors 20 media outlets to rank the Media Buzz of each player every day. Therefore the potential to earn media dividends for a Manchester United player is greater than any other player purely on the basis of the team they play for, regardless of quality of performance.
How can this be proven?
Let’s take a salient approach here. Top 3 media dividend winners this season:
- Bruno Fernandes with £1.65 per share
- Paul Pogba with £1.48 per share
- Jadon Sancho with £1.31 per share
That’s the mid-season sensational signing, the long-standing controversial megastar, and the wonderkid that’s been heavily linked to United for months.
Next best media hit this season has won below £1 in dividends yet is arguably the greatest player of all time, Lionel Messi. Followed by Ronaldo – another GOAT nominee.
Then in 9th and 10th best media winnings, you’ll find Marcus Rashford and Odion Ighalo. That’s 4 United players plus a heavily linked 5th prospect in the Top 10 media winners this term.
Enough to satisfy that the United Media Bias exists.
Furthermore, it explains that playing for United can earn you more dividends than playing well. Pogba hasn’t had half the season De Bruyne has. Ighalo isn’t half the player Aubameyang is. But more people read about United. So the media writes more about them. That’s all there is to it.
The most obvious pair to look at are the Media Dividend dominants; Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes. These two have smashed MB all season, without registering particularly significant PB dividends.
In fact, Paul Pogba has won just £0.02 in PB this season, whilst he’s taken £1.48 in media. Bruno Fernandes has only won £0.16 in PB whilst he’s won £1.65 in media buzz. It’s crystal clear now that Manchester United players are media kings.
So how expensive should Manchester United players be? How much is the United Bias worth?
We’ve crunched some numbers on United players’ media dividend return. All stats are correct as of July 2. On the whole, they’ve won £5.40 in media between a staggering 19 players this season.
So there’s an incredibly strange dynamic at play on Football Index right now, which may or may not be resolved with the updates in coming weeks and months with regard to the Media Ranking System. As it stands though, the PB opportunities between Manchester United and other ‘Top 4’ clubs are not particularly different on the whole. However, the media dividends at United are 4.2x greater than Liverpool this season – who had one of the greatest Premier League campaigns in the history of the competition.
In comparison to local rivals City, United are taking nearly 12x as many media dividends. To add to the bias, United have also had 19 different media dividend winners this season compared to City’s 6. City only have a third of the media dividend winners in their squad compared to United's.
If we remove Pogba and Bruno Fernandes from the equation, the table looks like this;
Taking away the two media stars of the season, Pogba and Bruno, still shows Liverpool only take 56% of the media dividends in comparison to United.
We’ve seen Mason Greenwood rocket this week on Football Index, following his exceptional performance against Brighton. An Anthony Martial hat-trick last week also generated a good rise in market activity. So should United players rise to similar prices as Bruno, Pogba and Rashford? Are there undervalued Manchester United players?
We’ll take Martial as a first example here. 24 year old striker in good form. At £3.07, he’s won £0.12 in media dividends this season. Only Tammy Abraham is younger and cheaper to have won more media dividends as a forward. In fact, there are vast numbers of well-known, established and hyped forwards that are more expensive yet have won far fewer media dividends this term. Mbappé, Gabriel Jesus, Paulo Dybala, Lautaro Martinez, Serge Gnabry.
Martial is undervalued on the assumption that he’ll be following suit with more media dividends in due course provided he remains United’s No.9. There are obvious PB factors that will dictate players price, but from an overall dividend perspective, this season there have only been 5 forwards under 25 years old to have won over £0.25 in dividends total;
- Timo Werner
- Marcus Rashford
- Raheem Sterling
- Erling Haaland
- Anthony Martial
This shortlist of young established dividend-winning forwards this season is 40% Manchester United, yet they’re 5th in the Premier League and not even playing Champions League football this season. If that doesn’t tell you that Media is driving the returns in United players, rather than PB, then I don’t know what will.
Of the £0.70 that Marcus Rashford has won this season, £0.59 has come from Media. It’s definitely not PB that make United Players profitable.
Are Manchester United Players Valued Accordingly?
The media stats speak volumes. There’s a 4.2x greater media success for United than there is Liverpool. Even if we remove the two huge media attractions, Pogba and Bruno, we are still left with a media potential nearly double that of nearest Premier League competitor, Liverpool.
So do United deserve twice the Buy Price Value?
At a glance you’d think United already are priced accordingly with the United Bias; the likes of Pogba, Bruno and Rashford are all punching above the £7 mark. But the rest of the squad also shares the bias, winning dividends throughout the season, but have not been inflated in price.
The following tables show the dividend winnings of comparable United and Liverpool players. The bottom row shows the number of dividends returned this season as a % of their current share value.
This shows just how valuable United players are. This shows the United bias without trading hype or FOMO.
We could even show this for the big names in the squads;
To conclude, in comparison to other Premier League Stars, many Manchester United players are still undervalued on Football Index. The United Bias does exist, and media dividends are far more likely to be won at Old Trafford than any other club. Finally, even at the current inflated prices, plenty of stars at United are still providing a greater % return on investment through dividends than other premier league stars. When you reduce capital appreciation and solely focus on dividends, Manchester United cannot be bettered this season.
Whether it's the same case in years to follow, time will tell. For as long as the media monitor continues in this fashion though, the United Bias can still be capitalised on.