For the fourth year in a row, the most valuable professional sports team in the world is the Dallas Cowboys, with a market value of $5 billion. The list of the top 10 sports teams with the highest market value in 2019 is based on Forbes annual ranking of the National Football League, the National Hockey League, the National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball, Formula 1, soccer and Nascar teams.
The 2019 list is dominated by football, soccer and basketball teams. Only one MLB team is in the top 10. No NHL, Formula 1 or Nascar teams made this list.
1. How 'Bout Those—Dallas Cowboys
With a market value of $5 billion, the world's most valuable sports team in 2019 is the Dallas Cowboys. Although the team has not won an NFL championship in more than two decades, it is the most valuable team in sports, largely due to its $1.2 billion home stadium, constructed in 2009.
In 2013, the Dallas Cowboys sold the naming rights of the stadium to AT&T Inc. for an estimated $400 million to $600 million. Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones, who purchased the team in 1989 for $150 million, is worth an estimated $8.5 billion.
2. Like Déjà Vu—New York Yankees
For the fourth consecutive year, the New York Yankees is the only Major League Baseball team featured in the top 10 most valuable sports teams. With an estimated value of $4.6 billion, the Yankees moved from the No. 5 spot last year to the No. 2 spot this year.
The team's most recent championship was in 2009, but it has 27 World Series titles, more than any other MLB team. The Yankees' overall market value increased by 15% from 2018.
3. Hala Madrid—Real Madrid
Real Madrid's market value rose 4% from last year. Its 2019 market value of $$4.24 billion means it remains the most valuable soccer team. The Spanish soccer team won the 2018 FIFA World Cup and is led by soccer's highest-paid athlete, Cristiano Ronaldo. Real Madrid was the most valuable team in professional sports from 2013 to 2015.
4. Barça, Barça—FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona's market value of $4.02 billion, down 1% from last year, makes the organization the second most valuable soccer team in 2019. Led by Lionel Messi, the world's second highest paid soccer player, FC Barcelona signed a kit deal with Nike Inc. that is estimated to be worth around $175 million per year and will run through the 2027-2028 season. In addition, the team is slated for a $650 million stadium renovation in which additional ticket revenue is anticipated.
5. Hooping It Up—New York Knicks
For the second year in a row, the National Basketball Association's most valuable team is the New York Knicks. The team's estimated value is $4 billion, up 11% from 2018. The New York Knicks took the title of most valuable NBA franchise from the Los Angeles Lakers in 2016, largely due to a new 20-year media rights deal worth $100 million in the first year.
The Knicks' lofty valuation takes into account the team's access to its own television network and landmark arena, by virtue of being a part of the public-owned Madison Square Garden Co. enterprise.
6. Hello, Hello—Manchester United
Manchester United PLC, the only publicly-traded sports team on the list, had the most valuable sports team in 2011 and 2012. This year, however, the team is in third place, with a market value of $3.81 billion, down 8% from 2018.
Soccer's richest team is a master at generating commercial income. For example, it entered a decade-long kit manufacturer/sponsorship deal worth almost $1 billion with Adidas, beginning in the 2015-2016 season.
7. On to Next Week—New England Patriots
The team with the second-highest market value in the National Football League is the New England Patriots. As of 2019, its market value is estimated at $3.8 billion, up 3% from 2018. The Patriot's loyal fan base allows for unique revenue opportunities for the franchise. The team has won the Super Bowl in three of the last five years—2015, 2017, and 2019.
In 2015, the Patriots unveiled the Optum Field Lounge at the south end zone of Gillette Stadium. This members-only club carries an annual fee of $1,500, mandates that a minimum of two memberships be purchased at a time, and does not include the cost of season tickets.
8. It's Showtime—Los Angeles Lakers
The second most valuable team in the NBA is the Los Angeles Lakers. The organization is worth an estimated $3.7 billion, up 12% from last year. In 2012, the Lakers began a 20-year, $4 billion local television deal with Time Warner.
The team has won a staggering 16 championships with the help of household names like Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. In 2018, famed superstar Lebron James joined the team.
9. Everything is Golden—Golden State Warriors
Another NBA team making the list is the Golden State Warriors. The team, where the highest-paid player in the NBA calls home—Stephen Curry, moved up from the No. 10 spot last year with a 13% increase in market value to $3.5 billion.
The team has won three of the last five NBA championships—2015, 2017, and 2018. The team will play its 2019 season at its newly opened $1.5 billion stadium, called the Chase Center.
10. The G-Men—New York Giants
Another NFC East football team, along with the Dallas Cowboys, ranks as one of the most valuable sports teams in 2019. The New York Giants, the third most valuable NFL team, has an estimated value of $3.3 billion.
A large part of this valuation is due to strong revenue performance by the franchise. The team generated $149 million in operating income last year, less than half that of the Cowboys’ $365 million.