Lionel Messi’s Famous Napkin Has Been Sold For $965,000

The well known napkin that connected young Lionel Messi to Barcelona was sold for £762,400 ($965,000) on Friday May 17, as per British Auction House Bonhams.

An agreement on a basic level to sign the then-13-year-old Messi was written on the napkin 25 years ago at a Barcelona tennis club. A more formal and point by point contract with the club then followed behind.

An undisclosed percentage of the sale price pays administrative fees for the online auction, in what’s called the buyer’s premium.

Bonhams said the auction was on behalf of Horacio Gaggioli, an agent from Messi’s home country of Argentina who was part of the deal.

The agreement language, written in blue ink, was expected to console the youngster’s dad, Jorge Messi, that the deal would go through.

In the mean time, Jorge Messi had taken steps to take his son back to Argentina since discussions with Barça had slowed down.

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The napkin, containing the date Dec. 14, 2000, bears the signatures of Gaggioli, another agent, Josep Maria Minguella and Barça’s then-sporting director, Carles Rexach, who met at a tennis club.

The starting price was £300,000 ($379,000).

Messi enjoyed almost twenty years with Barça after showing up from Argentina at 13 to play in the club’s youth team. He made his first-team debut in 2004 and played 17 seasons with the club. He assisted Barça with winning each significant trophy, including four Champions Leagues and 10 LaLiga titles.

Messi left Barça for Paris St Germain in summer 2021. He has since joined Inter Miami.

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