In an auction, six jerseys worn by football legend Lionel Messi during Argentina’s triumphant campaign in the 2022 World Cup have fetched a staggering $7.8 million, marking the highest price for sports memorabilia in the current year, as announced by Sotheby’s. Each jersey, worn by Messi during the first half of Argentina’s games in the World Cup, became symbolic artifacts tied to the historic moment when Argentina secured its third World Cup title by defeating France in a penalty shootout after a thrilling 3-3 draw.
The sale not only underscores the monetary value of these historic jerseys but also emphasizes their profound connection to the zenith of Messi’s illustrious football career. Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s head of modern collectibles, highlighted that these shirts are more than tangible reminders of a monumental sports moment; they encapsulate the pinnacle of the career of the most decorated football player in history.
While the auction hoped to set a new record for game-worn sports memorabilia, surpassing Michael Jordan’s 1998 NBA Finals jersey that sold for $10.1 million, Messi’s jerseys have claimed their place in history. The jerseys were showcased at Sotheby’s New York headquarters during the two-week online auction, with the winning bidder’s identity remaining undisclosed.
As these jerseys find new homes, a portion of the auction proceeds will be donated to the UNICAS Project, led by Sant Joan de Déu Barcelona Children’s Hospital and supported by the Leo Messi Foundation.