Messi’s World Cup-winning shirts set for record auction

Lionel Messi scored two goals and converted from the spot during the penalty shootout as Argentina beat France in the 2002 World Cup final

Six jerseys worn by Lionel Messi during Argentina’s World Cup-winning campaign are set to be auctioned by Sotheby’s in New York in a landmark event for sports memorabilia. 

The shirts, including the one from the final against France, are anticipated to exceed £8 million, with the sale described as a “monumental occasion in auction history.”

Messi, the captain of the victorious Argentine side, made history in the 2022 Fifa World Cup by becoming the first player to score in the group stage, last 16, quarter-finals, semi-finals, and final of a single tournament. The auction will showcase these iconic jerseys and is expected to underline Messi’s legacy as one of the greatest footballers of all time.

Brahm Wachter, Sotheby’s head of modern collectables, emphasised the significance of Messi’s journey in the World Cup and how the auction encapsulates his exceptional contributions to football excellence. The bidding process will be open from November 30 to December 14, with the shirts available for public exhibition at Sotheby’s New York headquarters.

While Messi played in all seven of Argentina’s World Cup matches, only two of the three shirts worn during the group stage will be auctioned, as one was swapped with Australia’s Cameron Devlin.

Sotheby’s also revealed that a portion of the proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Unicas Project, supported by the Leo Messi Foundation, benefiting children suffering from rare diseases at Sant Joan de Deu (SJD) Barcelona Children’s Hospital.