London Sotheby’s auctioned the NFT of a football goal for a record price in New York. The digital recreation of Johan Cruyff’s legendary goal sold for $550,000. It’s $693,000 including the bonus.
The session, which began as an online auction, turned into an impressive finale in front of a live audience. Sotheby’s had correctly assessed the interest of the video delivered by FC Barcelona. 40 bids were placed on the 40-second film “In a Way, Immortal” produced by BCN Visuals.
Over 40 visual effects experts worked on the digital sequence in which the Dutch player leaps into the air and shoots the ball. Underpinned by the music, Cruyff appears as a golden hero who swings weightlessly in the air and prepares the shot fired in 1973 in slow motion.
For nine days, bidders could bid online on the digital lot, which was offered without reservation. It continued live from $150,000. Two telephone bidders pushed the price up to $500,000. However, the contract was awarded to a written bid at the hammer price of $550,000.
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The set is made attractive by a variety of additional components. The buyer buys not only the film, but also still images, both as NFTs and as prints to hang on the wall. There are also exclusive VIP offers that you can claim as a so-called “Barça Digital Ambassador” of FC Barcelona. These include a behind-the-scenes tour, the chance to watch practice and kick a ball in a friendly game.
This is how object and experience merge. And the fans are paying for it. Given this, the question of how long the NFT hype will last becomes less relevant. But that says a lot about how new digital marketing strategies work and how football fans work.
But despite all the skepticism, the hype for NFTs is by no means over, as the example shows. Perhaps it will find its niche in souvenir markets rather than the narrower art market.
However, we don’t want to call the digital simulation of the goal hit an art. Although Eric Sas, founder of BCN Visuals, calls the video “a true renaissance digital art object” and wants to rank it alongside Michelangelo. The young entrepreneur is aiming for the stars.
In any case, for FC Barcelona it’s a good start for the nine other legendary moments that they still want to sell according to this scheme. As one of the famous club’s 400 million fans, you haven’t missed a thing.
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