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Bundesliga clubs' revenue top €4 billion from top two flights

German football is booming with record revenue across the Bundesliga's top two divisions of just over €4 billion last season, the 13th straight there has been an increase.

The German football league (DFL) says revenue among the 36 teams in the top two tiers increased by 4.2 percent from the season before, with 14 of the 18 top-flight Bundesliga clubs generating revenue of more than €100 million.

The Bundesliga alone generated €3.37bn, up from €3.24bn in 2015-16, while the second division set a record of €635.2m, up 4.4 percent on the season before.

DFL chief Christian Seifert said: "We are the league with the second highest turnover in the world. In sum, the league is totally healthy."

But he also warned that the sporting development of the league must keep up with its economic growth.

"Do we get the best return from all the money?" he asked during the presentation in quotes reported by Frankfurter Rundschau. "I doubt we can answer that question with yes."

Seifert claimed Bundesliga was second only to Premier League in revenue, but warned that the German league must now find its own path.

"We must stop looking at the English revenues, and think we are poor," he said. "We've got a very good financial set-up and most make more of our opportunities." 

Of the 18 top-flight clubs, only Hertha Berlin and Hamburg made a loss last season. Altogether, Bundesliga clubs posted earnings after taxes of €150m, down from €206m the season before.

This season, RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund were relegated from Champions League to Europa League, where all German starters -- Hertha Berlin, FC Cologne, TSG Hoffenheim, and SC Freiburg -- failed to reach the knockout stages or even the group stages.

"We must take the Europa League more serious," Seifert said, and voiced his hoped the ongoing would only be "wholesome lesson" showing "some teams to try harder."

The DFL chief then called for a "painful analysis" of the situation and an "open discussion" where everything including the results in Europe, but also the schooling of coaches and the playing philosophy must be put to test.

Information from Germany correspondent Stephan Uersfeld was used in this report.

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