Just ahead of the upcoming World Cup in Qatar, Panini America has signed one of the top soccer players in the world to a multi-year deal for trading cards and autographs. The 23-year-old French soccer star’s exclusive, multi-year deal covers autographs in both Panini trading card products and through Panini Authentic, the company’s memorabilia division.
“As a child, I used to collect some of Panini trading cards, dreaming to be represented on these cards one day. Ten years later, here we are!” Kylian Mbappé stated in a news release.
Four years ago, Mbappe became the youngest French player to score in a World Cup and joined Pele as the only teen to score a goal in a World Cup Final. Earlier this year, he signed a contract extension with Paris St.-Germain that will keep him with the top Ligue 1 pro franchise through 2025. He’s won two Ligue 1 Player of the Year Awards and led th league in scoring three straight years.
Earlier this summer, Topps had signed a deal with his pro team in Europe, Paris St. Germain, to produce a high end boxed set under its Chrome brand that included the first on-card Mbappe autographs as well as a standard Topps team set in a hanger box that has randomly inserted autographs. Those now appear to be the only Topps autographs Mbappe will sign, at least for a while.
Mbappé’s first Panini autographs will arrive in the upcoming National Treasures FIFA Road To The World Cup Soccer product which will release in September, followed by Prizm FIFA World Cup Qatar in October and Eminence in December. Mbappé’s first autographed memorabilia pieces (soccer balls, jerseys, photographs and other items) will also be available exclusively through Panini Authentic beginning in late October. He’s currently part of Panini’s recently released 2022 World Cup Stickers product.
Mbappé will also be featured extensively in the company’s social media and marketing initiatives surrounding major soccer launches and future event activations