Women’s sides will bring “significant value” to clubs in future seasons, according to analysis from Deloitte.
But the finance company warns there is still work to do if the women’s game is to keep growing in a “financially sustainable way”.
A report found the world’s leading clubs made an average revenue of 2.1m euros (£1.9m) from their women’s teams last year but returned an overall loss.
Losses are expected of “any business” in an early stage, one expert said.
Tim Bridge, lead partner for Deloitte’s Sports Business Group, added: “Revenues generated by top clubs at this early stage indicates the significant value that women’s sides will bring to clubs in future seasons, as their popularity and success continues to grow.
“There’s still significant work to be done to ensure that women’s club football continues to professionalise and develop in a financially sustainable way.
“Although losses are to be expected for any business in its nascent phase, the challenge now for the women’s game is to develop an appropriate strategy for growth which may not simply follow the template of the men’s game; in fact, that approach may well limit growth potential.”
The Deloitte report looked into the finances of the women’s teams of the world’s top 20 revenue-generating clubs.
Of those, it found Barcelona, the 2021 Women’s Champions League winners and 2022 finalists, generated the most revenue in the 2021-22 season – 7.7m euros (£6.8m).
Manchester City reported the second-highest revenue for their women’s side with 5.1m euros (£4.5m), followed by Paris St-Germain’s 3.6m euros (£3.2m), Arsenal’s 2.2m euros (£2m) and Tottenham’s 2.1m euros (£1.9m).
The overall losses were contributed to by the fact wage costs surpassed total revenues in almost all cases.