Qatar 2022 is Messi’s last chance attempt to finally secure a World Cup for his home country.
Lionel Messi has revealed that his final World Cup shirts will be auctioned off to football fans during and after games as part of a new partnership between the Argentine Football Association (AFA) and football-culture marketplace AC Momento.
Messi, who is widely regarded as the greatest player of all time, will captain Argentina in Qatar, attempting to emulate his compatriot and football icon Diego Maradona, the last Argentine to lift the World Cup trophy in 1986.
Maradona’s match-worn shirt from Argentina’s now-famous 1986 World Cup quarter-final victory over England was auctioned off earlier this year for $8.95 million, breaking the record for the most expensive piece of sports memorabilia ever sold.
“Argentina is one of the best teams in the world and without question one of the favourites this month in Qatar,” shared John Brennan, Founder & CEO of AC Momento.
“Given this is the final time we’ll see Lionel Messi on the World Cup stage, it would be a fitting end to see him lift the Jules Rimet trophy and cement his legacy as the greatest to ever play the game.
“Should they be successful, we can only speculate as to the value of those Argentina shirts – but it’s safe to say that any football fan would be proud to own such a historical item and I’m grateful that through our partnership with the AFA and the support of Messi, AC Momento can bring this unique opportunity to fans and collectors.”
Fans will also be able to bid on the match-worn shirts of superstar names including Julian Alvarez, Angel Di Maria, Paulo Dybala, Lisandro Martinez, Rodrigo De Paul and many more, as they face off against Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Poland in the World Cup group stages.
Auctions will begin on the Momento Market mobile app (iOS, Android) at the start of each game and will continue through the game.
Successful bidders will receive the shirt as well as a digital Certificate of Authenticity (dCOA) with a unique identifier that can be traced back to an authentication label attached to the associated jersey.
Netherlands to auction shirts to support migrant workers
The shirts worn by the Netherlands team during the World Cup will be auctioned to support migrant workers in Qatar, the Dutch Football Association (KNVB) said on Monday.
The KNVB is one of the few football associations to criticise human rights and working conditions in Qatar ahead of the FIFA world Cup.
The KNVB decided to use the proceeds from the online auction to improve the situation of migrant workers after consulting with the players, according to the KNVB’s website.
“It has not escaped anyone’s notice that facilitating the tournament has had a huge impact on migrant workers in Qatar,” Dutch captain Virgil van Dijk said.
“They have worked on stadiums, infrastructure and hotel accommodation under very harsh conditions. We will remember that during all our activities there. It is clear to everyone that those conditions really need to improve.”
“We hope that our presence will contribute to the changes currently underway,” Van Dijk added.
“Much has already been done from the boardrooms to improve the situation of migrant workers. But we also want to make a concrete contribution from the dressing room.”
The Netherlands team will also take time in Qatar to meet a group of about 20 migrants to talk about their working conditions and to give them the opportunity to join in the squad training, Reuters reported.