Six of the shirts worn by Lionel Messi during Argentina’s successful 2022 World Cup campaign are expected to fetch in excess of $10million when they go on auction in New York at the end of this month.
Messi finally lifted the most iconic trophy in world football at the fifth attempt in Qatar last December, helping Argentina beat France on penalties after a remarkable 3-3 draw in the final.
Having also landed the prize in 2014, the Barcelona great became the first player in World Cup history to win the Golden Ball award on two occasions, having scored seven goals and added three assists throughout Argentina’s campaign.
Six shirts worn by Messi throughout the tournament – including that worn during the first half of the final – will be auctioned off by New York-based auction house Sotheby’s later this month.
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In a statement, Sotheby’s said: “The extraordinary collection is estimated in excess of $10m (£8m), with the sale poised to become the most valuable collection of sports memorabilia at auction.
“A portion of the proceeds from the auction will be donated to UNICAS Project, led by Sant Joan de Deu (SJD) Barcelona Children’s Hospital with the support of Leo Messi Foundation, to meet the needs of children suffering from rare diseases.”
The record auction price for a piece of game-worn sports memorabilia belongs to Michael Jordan’s jersey from the first game of the 1998 NBA Finals, when he led the Chicago Bulls to their sixth NBA championship in the space of eight seasons.
That jersey was sold for $10.1m (£8.08m) at auction last year.
The record for a game-worn item of football memorabilia, meanwhile, was broken last May when Diego Maradona’s shirt from Argentina’s famous 1986 World Cup win over England was sold for $9.3m (£7.1m) in London.
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