A year after Lionel Messi led Argentina to the 2022 World Cup title, Sotheby’s will offer six of his game-worn jerseys from the tournament.
Donned by the Argentine captain during the first half of the Final, Semi-final, Quarter-final, Round of 16, and two of the three Group Stage matches, the set of six white and sky blue Argentina home shirts will be offered in a dedicated sale open for bidding from Nov. 30-Dec 14.
They’re expected to bring at least $10 million.
The record for the most expensive individual sports memorabilia item is $12.6 million paid last year for an SGC 9.5 copy of Mickey Mantle’s 1952 Topps card. The current record for a game-worn item is Michael Jordan’s 1998 NBA Finals jersey, which sold for $10.1 million at Sotheby’s New York in September of last year. The record for a game-worn soccer item was set in May of last year when Diego Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ shirt netted $9.3 million at Sotheby’s London.
The Messi shirts are being brought to auction by US-based tech startup AC Momento, who in addition to their mobile app for sports fans, partners with high-profile athletes (like Messi) to help manage their match-worn memorabilia collections.
“As a longtime collector of match-worn football memorabilia, this is the kind of auction I dreamed about bringing to market when we started AC Momento,” stated company founder and CEO John Brennan. “The winner of this sale will enjoy a profound connection to the pinnacle moment in the career of the greatest player of all time and own the most important collection of football shirts from any single event in the history of the sport.”
A portion of the proceeds will be donated to UNICAS Project, led by Sant Joan de Déu (SJD) Barcelona Children’s Hospital with the support of Leo Messi Foundation, to meet the needs of children suffering from rare diseases.
The set of shirts will be on view at Sotheby’s New York offices during the auction.