Football: Aston Villa suffered a reduced loss of £17.7 million for the year ending May 31 2012, the club confirmed today.
This compares with a loss of £53.9m by the Midlands club in the previous 12 months.
Villa managed to cut their deficit despite a fall in turnover of £11.6m caused by 16th-placed finish in the Premier League, fewer live TV matches, lower crowds and early exits from both domestic cups.
The average league crowd fell from 37,220 in 2010-11 to 33,873. But operating expenses were reduced by £20.3m to £138.4m and player trading raised profits by £8.1m to £26.9m.
Ashley Young and Stewart Downing were sold for a combined figure of around £35m.
Chairman Randy Lerner waived interest on loans of £107.1m to Villa, which created a one-time benefit to the club of £20.3m.
Chief financial officer Robin Russell said: "By managing costs effectively, the club managed to cut losses by more than half during a period which continued to be challenging economically."
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