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Barcelona Surpasses Real Madrid at Top of Forbes' Most Valuable Soccer Teams List

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVApril 12, 2021

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 10: Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona in action during the La Liga Santander match between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on April 10, 2021 in Madrid, Spain. Sporting stadiums around Spain remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)
Angel Martinez/Getty Images

Real Madrid topped Barcelona in El Classico Saturday, but it's Barcelona that sits atop the list of the most valuable clubs in the world, per Mike Ozanian of Forbes.

B/R Football @brfootball

Barcelona take the top spot as the world's most valuable team, per @Forbes πŸ’° pic.twitter.com/bhi9pc2o1n

Barcelona are currently worth $4.76 billion, barely edging out its La Liga rival Real Madrid, which sits at $4.75 billion.

It's the first time Barcelona has topped the list, which has seen either Real Madrid or Manchester United sit at No. 1 in each of the last 16 years.

The presence of Lionel Messi, the highest-paid player in the sport, likely helps Barcelona in its marketability, although the superstar's contract is up at the end of the year and he could leave for another top club this summer.

The club will likely still remain one of the biggest in the world, just as Real Madrid was able to stay high on the list after the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Premier League also has a heavy presence on the list of the most valued clubs in the world, with five teams inside the top 10 led by Manchester United at No. 4. 

Liverpool is one of the biggest risers on the list with the valuation growing 88 percent since the last list two years ago. This comes after a Champions League title in 2019 and a Premier League title in 2019-20.

It's been a good investment for John Henry and the Fenway Sports Group, including LeBron James, who has been a part-owner of the club since 2011 and became a partner last month.

French club Paris Saint-Germain has grown 129 percent since the last valuation and now ranks ninth at $2.5 billion thanks to star players like Neymar and Kylian Mbappe.