Sports

Lionel Messi's FIFA World Cup 2022 Winning Argentina Shirts Fall Short Of Expected Record Sale, Fetch 7.8 Million USD Still

Lionel Messi's FIFA World Cup 2022-winning football shirts were collectively sold for 7.8 million USD at Sotheby's in New York, short of the 10 million USD expectation levied on them. The sale still set a record for the most expensive Messi memorabilia ever sold

Messi celebrates after scoring the third goal of the match against France on Sunday.
info_icon

Six of Lionel Messi's FIFA World Cup 2022-winning match shirts were sold for a combined total of 7.8 million USD at an auction held by Sotheby's in New York on Thursday, December 13, 2023. Messi had worn the shirts on offer during the first half of six matches for Argentina in the Qatar-based World Cup. (Football News)

The build-up to the auction was brimming with expectation, with many even speculating that the collection of shirts would cross the 10 million USD mark and eventually overtake the record held by Michael Jordan's 1998 NBA Finals Game 1 jersey. However, they ultimately fell below the 10.1 million USD bar and went for less than what an individual had previously splurged on Diego Maradona's infamous 'Hand of God' shirt (9.8 millon USD).

Still, the 7.8 million USD spent on Messi memorabilia on Thursday - including buyer's premium - were the most splurged on any artefact of the Argentina international and by some distance. The digit to beat was USD 450,000 that Messi's match-worn shirt from an El Clasico in 2017 had fetched, with the sale on December 13 surpassing it with ease. 

A year earlier, Messi had led Argentina to a third FIFA World Cup title from the front. The record Ballon d'Or winner had scored five goals en route to the final and would net two more in the 3-3 regular time draw with France, before converting from the spot to help his team in the victory. 

Months later, Messi concluded his Paris Saint-Germain sojourn to join Inter Miami in a historic deal. The Argentinian flew across the Atlantic to continue his football in the United States of America, becoming the new face of a league that had risen in prominence since the arrival of David Beckham more than a decade ago. Messi would later be joined by his ex-teammates Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba in Miami, with the trio helping the team's late, albeit unsuccessful, charge toward the playoff spots. 

Messi would also collect his eighth Ballon d'Or award in between, moving three past his closest competitor Cristiano Ronaldo. The veteran beat young duo of Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland to the individual honour, ascertaining his place as one of, if not the best players in history. 

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement