Look at the delta in earnings for Atletico compared to Barca and Real and then look at our delta compared to Chelsea, City, Utd... they make WAY, WAY less than the big boys. In relation to their recent spending:
The net amount spent on players according to Transfermarkt was around 42.5 million Euros.
In 15/16 they had net surplus of about 24 million.
14/15 they had net of less than 30 million Euros.
13/14 they had net surplus of 34 million.
12/13 they were pretty break even.
So basically, since 12/13 (inclusive), Atletico Madrid has net spend on transfers of about 15 million Euros.
If you include 11/12, the year they sold Aguero and bought Falcao, it only adds about 3 million Euros to their net spend.
Wages-wise, they are 17th in Europe at 105 million Euros according to http://talksport.com/football/top-20-biggest-wages-bills-europe-revealed-football-clubs-ranked-20-number-one-160706202137?p=3
Liverpool has wage bill OVER A HUNDRED MILLION MORE THAN ATLETICO.
Arsenal's is 240 million to Atletico's 105.
Everton is 97.5 million..
So here is where it gets silly - Real Madrid wage bill is 289 million and Barca is 340 million.
So basically Arsenal is behind Chelsea by 31 million, ManU by around 15 million, and relatively similar to Man City.
Atletico has wage bill that is 184 million lower than Real and 235 million lower than Barca...
Not even comparison... like I said, they are MUCH more like Everton in relative financial terms than they are Liverpool or us, and the comparison gets more insane when you consider who they are competing with compared to us.