Collectible or trading sports cards are small cards typically made out of either thick paper or paperboard containing an image of a certain person and a brief description of him/her, such as statistics, trivia, etc. Collecting these cards is one of the major hobbies of people all around the world.
The history of football cards
and Company Tobacco from Manchester, England, made the first football trading cards in 1898. The set was titled “Club Colors” and it contained more than one hundred cards. On the front of the card was an illustrated image of a football player, and on the back a tobacco advertisement.
Soon other tobacco companies started creating their own sets of cards. “Famous Footballers” was a 50-card set made by Ardath in 1934, which featured players’ images on the front, and a short biography and a tobacco advertisement on the back.
From 1958, football cards were sold with chewing gum in the UK, and soon Spain and Italy began following this trend, as well. The Topps Company has held the license for making the Premier League sticker albums since 1994, and their Premier League trading card game – Match Attax, is currently the best-selling sports trading card game worldwide, and the best-selling boys’ collectible game in the United Kingdom.
Panini introduces their football trading card game – Adrenalyn XL, in 2009, as well as a UEFA Champions League edition in 2010, which contained 350 cards with players from 22 of the competing clubs.
Where to buy football cards
Football card collectors are very fortunate today because buying the cards now is easier than ever. Even rare and vintage collections are available thanks to the Internet. Collectors typically turn to eBay and Amazon when buying online because they offer the largest assortment, but you can also purchase them in your local supermarket or at the newsstand, as well.
How to determine the value of the card
The value of a card is determined according to its condition, the popularity of the player on it and its scarcity. This means that older cards are now considered to be extremely valuable and rare, and come with a pretty high price tag.
The condition of the card is one of the principle things that determines its value. More precisely, the next four areas are evaluated – surface, edges, corners and centering. The card can be scored from 1 to 10, one being poor condition, and ten pristine. Consequently, the value of the pristine card is much higher.
This is why many collectors store their cars appropriately so that they do not lose their value. Storing football cards in a proper casing will help prevent damaging them, and it also increases their value.