It has never been easier to discover where to buy soccer trading cards and this is especially true in the United States. The digital marketplace has taken off, with collectibles being one of the big beneficiaries. Store distribution has also exploded, although recent transgressions from a few have begun reformation in that market. Even with all the access, it has been difficult for card producers such as Panini and Topps to keep up with the growing demand. This has led to a number of creative ways to collect soccer cards and stickers of your favorite players and from your favorite teams.
The life cycle of soccer cards and stickers starts in packs and boxes and that is where the possibilities begin. Options available will depend on where you go for your cards. Local card shops (LCS) or some of the bigger online sellers will sell boxes and packs that are considered “hobby.” Box stores such as Wal-Mart and Target sell retail blaster boxes. The main difference will be the probabilities to pull more highly coveted (and different) inserts. Hobby boxes will provide better chances to get autographs or other popular insert offerings. For instance, each hobby box (12 packs of 12 cards) of Premier League Panini Prizm will contain 1x Autograph, 16x Prizm Parallels, and 6x insert cards. By comparison, a retail blaster box (6 packs of 4 cards) will have 3x Prizms and 2x inserts – which may or may not be an autograph. The differences in chances translates to different prices. A hobby box will cost around $500. The retail blaster box is a cheaper option at $50.
Purchasing sealed products can have numerous benefits. To start, there is a thrill to opening a pack of soccer cards or stickers and not knowing what to expect. The rush you get when pulling your favorite player or an autograph from a superstar can be great. There is a reason casinos are so popular and this would be the collecting equivalent. However, in this version of collecting roulette, you are always guaranteed something.
For those looking at soccer cards as an opportunity to make some money, purchasing a box of cards is comparable to buying a lottery ticket. There is a chance you pull a card that is worth more than the cost of the box. Recent sales of a Harry Kane Color Blast insert have been around $700. That would be a good return on investment from the hobby box and incredible if pulled in a retail blaster box.
Where to buy soccer trading cards: Other options
There can also be an option to buy specific cards individually. This, too, can provide many advantages. If you are collecting an entire set, it can become difficult and costly to continue to chase a few cards in packs. There is also the opportunity to identify cards and specific players as investment opportunities much like you would do if purchasing a company’s stock.
The ability to purchase individual cards has gone through a great transformation. Historically, you would need to go to your local card store or attend a card show, and then hope they have a specific card for sale. Now, there are numerous sites that provide platforms for people to buy and sell soccer cards. Most prominent of the digital options is eBay. This has become the most popular option for many sellers and buyers as there is protection for buyers and sellers and a platform that allows for quick searching. In 2020 alone, there were over 4 million cards sold, as reported by eBay’s “State of Trading Cards” report. There are also growing options like Mercari and MySlabs that have increasing users and offer a different market.
The soccer card market continues to change. There will always be new products to buy and new ways to find them. While the digital market continues to flourish, traditional methods still exist and provide opportunity. Even in times when demand outnumbers supply, finding awesome soccer cards can be right around the corner or right at your fingertips.
2015-16 Panini Select Romelu Lukaku (#85)
Lukaku had a wonderful season leading Inter Milan to the Serie A title. His 24 goals were the most he scored since his 2016-17 season with Everton. The improvement in form comes at a great time as he can look to translate his performance to the upcoming Euro 2020. Belgium are one of the early favorites and if Lukaku can help lead them on a deep run in the tournament by scoring multiple goals his cards will only rise in value. Of his card options, his rookie card should hold the most value. With it featuring Lukaku in his Belgium shirt it could also be more desirable during his international run in Euro 2020.
Have any questions about what makes soccer trading cards valuable? Let us know in the comments section below.
Articles from our series focused on soccer trading cards and stickers:
• Soccer trading cards: Why it’s time to consider investing in the hobby
• What makes soccer trading cards valuable, and why and how to get them graded
• Collecting Panini’s Euro 2020 stickers is a perfect accompaniment to watching the tournament
• Where to buy soccer trading cards, and how hobby and retail boxes are different
Videos: Unboxing of soccer cards and stickers
• 2020/21 Obsidian soccer cards
• 2020/21 Topps Museum Collection: UEFA Champions League
• 2018/19, 2019/20 & 2020/21 Topps Bundesliga stickers
• 2020/21 Panini Prizm Premier League trading cards
• Euro 2020 Panini stickers
• Panini Chronicles box break featuring Neymar autograph
• Orbis World Cup 1990: The greatest soccer sticker album of all time
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