League tables are a mainstay of football – the Premiership wouldn't make much sense without the results table and its inevitable rankings.

But elsewhere in life, results tables can be controversial: many teachers strongly opposed league tables based just on the results pupils picked up, because the comparsion, they said, wasn't fair.

A school whose intake is comprised of children with wealthy parents, lots of books at home, and English as a first language could get much better results than a school without those advantages, even if the teachers (and teaching) was much worse.

That's why (at least until 2010) school league tables tried to take account of such things, looking at the 'value added' by teachers in a given school – how much they'd done to improve the prospects of their particular intake.

Of course, such complaints could also be made about football, since not all teams are created equal. Some have millions (potentially billions) to splash around on player acquisition, top-notch facilities, and more, while others barely have a penny.

So how much of Alex Ferguson's success is due to his being a visionary manager, and how much is because he worked at a well-resourced team?

We've made a rough – and tongue-in-cheek – version of a "value added" Premiership table for 2011/12. We've taken the wage bill of each club (essentially the equivalent of a child's background), and the final points tally of each club – then looks at how many millions of pounds were spent to win each point.

A manager who uses less money to secure each point is, arguably, showing a greater level of "value added" through his and his player's skills, than one scoring more.

This table looks very different to the traditional one. Brendan Rodgers, then manager of Swansea City, comes out top, securing one point for every £740,000 on wages.

Chelsea sink to the bottom of the table, securing just one point for every £2.7m they spent.

Alex Ferguson ranks in at 15th – ahead of Arsenal, Manchester City, and Chelsea – spending £1.82 million on wages for each of the 89 points his team secures.

Of course, such a measure is far from comprehensive – and some fans might cast a little doubt on a system which ranks relegated Wolverhampton Wanderers higher than Fergie. Depending who they support, of course.

The value-added Premier League table, 2011-12
TeamWage Bill, £m (2011-12)Premier League position (2011-12)Points£m per point
Swansea City 35 11 47 0.74
Norwich City 37 12 47 0.79
Wigan Athletic 38 15 43 0.88
Newcastle United 64 5 65 0.98
West Bromwich Albion 50 10 47 1.06
Everton 63 7 56 1.12
Stoke City 53 14 45 1.18
Fulham 62 9 52 1.19
Tottenham Hotspur 90 4 69 1.30
Sunderland 64 13 45 1.42
Wolverhampton Wanderers 38 20 25 1.52
Bolton Wanderers 55 18 36 1.53
Queens Park Rangers 58 17 37 1.57
Blackburn Rovers 50 19 31 1.61
Manchester United 162 2 89 1.82
Aston Villa 70 16 38 1.84
Arsenal 143 3 70 2.04
Manchester City 202 1 89 2.27
Liverpool 119 8 52 2.29
Chelsea 173 6 64 2.70