Thursday, 19 August 2021

Game Changer: Messi’s New Crypto Contract

What soccer superstar Lionel Messi’s new crypto contract means for the future of sports

The worlds of sports and crypto have intersected over and over this year — with everyone from Tom Brady and Saquon Barkley to the Dallas Mavericks making headlines. But Lionel Messi, soccer's biggest star, may have just literally changed the game with his new crypto contract. Here’s how it works:

Argentine superstar Messi gets paid in crypto as part of a two-year contract (which includes an annual salary of $41 million plus bonuses) to play for French club Paris Saint-Germain. In an effort to engage with its global fanbase, the team launched its own cryptocurrency, PSG, last year. Messi’s welcome package includes a large number of PSG tokens. 

Such fan tokens can bring diehard supporters into team decisions by voting (via the Socios blockchain) on everything from uniform designs to which players should win MVP awards. Tokens can also be traded between fans around the world and make holders eligible for promotions.

Why it matters... Fan tokens could make sports fandom far more interactive, and top sports franchises are taking note. This week, the LA Clippers announced it would join the Socios platform. Formula 1 racing teams Aston Martin and Alfa Romeo, the UFC, and soccer clubs including Arsenal, Manchester City, and Barcelona (Messi’s old squad) have all also launched tokens of their own.

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