By Richard Martin
BARCELONA (Reuters) – La Liga leaders Barcelona received a record 146.2 million euros (£129.6 million) last season from television rights, figures from La Liga show, earning seven million euros more than champions Real Madrid.
The 20 clubs in Spain’s top flight took in 1.247 billion euros, rising from 1.237 billion from the previous year, with Barca earning an extra 6.2 million than the year before.
The income is distributed according to results in the last five years, explaining why Barca, champions in 2013, 2015 and 2016, earned more than Real, who won the title last season for the first time since 2012.
Real earned the second biggest amount, 140 million euros, Atletico Madrid picked up the third largest share, 99 million, while Athletic Bilbao took the fourth largest sum, 71 million.
Leganes, who in 2016 were promoted to the top flight for the first time ever, earned the smallest amount of all the teams, pocketing 39.3 million.
Barca are nine points clear of Atletico at the top of La Liga, which resumes on Saturday after taking a two-week winter break.
Last season was the second campaign in which La Liga sold its television rights collectively following a change in the Spanish law in 2015. Under the previous system, based on club’s negotiating their deals individually, the league earned a total 851 million euros from television rights.
La Liga, which controls the top two divisions in Spanish football, distributes 90 percent of income to the top flight, with 10 percent going to the second tier Segunda Division.
The league is currently negotiating its next television deal, coming into effect from 2019-20, which the organisation’s president Javier Tebas says could be worth 2.3 billion.
(Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Christian Radnedge)