Injuries cost Premier League clubs £157.4 million during 2015/16 season, finds JLT Specialty

12 August 2016

  • £669m has been spent on wages for injured players since the start of the 2011/12 season
  • Average number of injuries per team has risen from 25 in 2011/12 to 35 in 2015/16, a 40% increase
  • Newcastle United players were out of action for 2,364 days, the highest in the season
  • Leicester City’s title victory aided by lowest injury count (69% below average) of all Premier League clubs

JLT Specialty, the specialist insurance broker and risk consultant, has calculated that Premier League clubs paid out more than £157 million to injured players during the 2015/16 season. A total of £669 million has been spent on wages for injured players since the start of the 2011/12 season. Given the ever increasing wages of Premier League players, clubs are increasingly looking to use insurance as a tool to mitigate against this.

Over the last five seasons there has been a 40% increase in the average number of injuries per team, as the top five clubs paid £344 million in wages to their injured players, with Manchester United topping the list (£90 million).

There were a total of 705 injuries to Premier League players during the 2015/16 season. This means that Premier League players missed a total of 20,711 days, which adds up to 56 years, through injury.

Hamstring injuries were the most common during the 2015/16 season accounting for almost a quarter (22%) of the 705 injuries during the season. While knee injuries accounted for only 15.2% of all injuries incurred, they were the most severe type of injury, in terms of days out of action, with a player missing an average of 9.5 games compared to 4.8 games for a hamstring injury.

Premier League Insurance

In Leicester City’s title-winning season JLT found that Leicester players were only out of action for a total of 192 days, 81% lower than the league average of 1035.5 days. In contrast, Newcastle United players were out of action for 2,364 days, the highest in the season and over twelve times more than Leicester City.

Premier League Insurance

Duncan Fraser, Head of Sport, Media and Entertainment at JLT Specialty, commented: 

“With reports of a further £2.3bn to £3bn worth of deals for overseas TV rights, Premier League clubs could be earning £8bn in broadcast revenues over the next three seasons. This fresh influx of money will undoubtedly have a knock-on effect for players when they negotiate their contracts. This is expected to increase the amount spent on injured players’ salaries, as the number of injuries per season continues to rise.

“Over the past five seasons, Premier League clubs spent more than £200 million on players who were injured for more than 90 days at a time. We believe that almost three quarters of this cost could have been covered by a Wageroll Protection policy, where the insurance allows clubs to cover either their players’ total wageroll or a proportion of a player’s annual wage.”

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Notes to Editors

About JLT Specialty

JLT Specialty Limited (JLT Specialty) is a specialist insurance broker and risk consultant, providing market leading industry knowledge and expertise in specialist fields to some of the world's largest companies.

JLT Specialty is part of the Jardine Lloyd Thompson Group of companies (JLT), one of the world’s leading providers of insurance, reinsurance and employee benefits related advice, brokerage and associated services. JLT’s client proposition is built upon its deep specialist knowledge, client advocacy, tailored advice and service excellence.

JLT is quoted on the London Stock Exchange and owns offices in 39 territories with more than 10,000 employees. Supported by the JLT International Network, it offers risk management and employee benefit solutions in 135 countries.

For more information about JLT please visit www.jltspecialty.com and www.jlt.com

Methodology

Injury data was collected for every competitive match played by the Premier League teams between 2011 and 2016, all data was collected from public sources. The key data sources were Transfermrkt, Physioroom, and Sky Sports.

The following data points were captured for the analysis - Player name, date of injury, type of injury, length out (days), games missed, player position, player total games played, player age.

Only injuries which caused players to miss at least one game were counted for the purpose of this report.

Enquiries:

Smithfield Consultants

Aidan Holloway | aholloway@smithfieldgroup.com | +44 (0)20 7903 0678

Julia Cooke | jcooke@smithfieldgroup.com | +44 (0)20 7903 0641