It may fight with baseball for the attention of Americans but in the rest of the world, the World Cup is beyond huge. Topps and Panini are busy cranking out card and sticker sets to coincide with the Cup...and the interest and sales overseas are staggering.
Topps is launching its World Stars trading card game which will feature cards depicting "football" stars from all 32 teams competing in South Africa this year.
The set includes some of the biggest names in soccer such as Portugal's' Ronaldo, England's Rooney, Ghana's Essien and Italy's Cannavaro.
Hot on the heels of the worldwide success of Match Attax, the World Stars Trading Card Game includes 173 cards, including Limited Editions, Man of the Matches, Star Players and 100 Club cards.
Chris Rodman, Topps Vice President said "We are excited to offer something new and different to consumers this year. The Premier League Match Attax brand is very strong, however it is always important to refresh the collection and keep up with the latest trends. We have made extra effort to actively engage retailers in capitalizing on this brand new collection across multiple platforms. We will be supporting retailers with different promotions throughout the World Cup period."
The collection will launch across South Africa on May 31 and will be supported with extensive promotion.
Marolo Rosa, International Sales and Marketing Director at Topps Europe said, "In light of its international success, we are delighted with the development of the Match Attax franchise in South Africa. The Attax brand is well known among children worldwide and the combination of collectability and trading card game brings excitable fun and viral entertainment to children. "
The collection features a starter pack which includes a 16 page collector guide, a packet with 5 player cards including one Limited edition card, a portable squad box and a playing pitch. Display boxes include a window poster.
Panini has been soccer headquarters for kid and adult collectors in Europe and South America for years. The company is releasing its latest set in Brazil and get this...they expect sales to to blow past one billion packs this year.
Collecting Panini soccer stickers is an obsession for fans in many countries, with trading sessions a very popular pasttime. Check out the story on Bettor.com.
There are currently over 9,000 listings in the soccer card market on eBay.