Chelsea Football Club’s wage bill shot up £25m in the year to 30 June 2015, its latest Companies House filing shows.
It means Chelsea’s wage bill was the highest of all the Premier League clubs at £215.6m, compared with £190m a year earlier.
Manchester United came second with a £203m wage bill, Manchester City third on £193.8m and Arsenal fourth on £192m.
Chelsea won the Premier League title and the League Cup in 2015.
The bill does not split out the amount spent on player wages from backroom and ground staff.
The club’s form has dipped dramatically this year, with the champions lying in 14th place in the table and the task of making it into the top four seemingly impossible.
The club’s accounts also showed it made a pre-tax loss of £22.6m compared with £19m profit a year earlier.
Chelsea said turnover fell £5.5m to £319m because of lower Champions League broadcasting revenues after the club went out of the competition in the knockout stage on the away goal rule after drawing 3-3 with Paris Saint Germain.
The 2014-15 season, which the financial results cover, saw Chelsea make a profit of £42m on the sale of footballers including Romelu Lukaku to Everton, Ryan Bertrand to Southampton and Andre Schurrle to Wolfsburg. Other players such as Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole left in the season.
But, the season also saw the arrival of players like Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas as well as the return of talisman Didier Drogba.