Staggering cost of completing this year’s World Cup Panini sticker book
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As the 2022 Qatar World Cup is fast approaching, football fanatics will look to the long-running Panini sticker collection to well and truly get them in the mood.
The school playgrounds will be packed with tense swapping negotiations and work offices will be full of adults reminiscing on childhood memories.
However, what was once a cheap activity for many of us growing up will be sadly no more due to the prices of football stickers rising astronomically.
So much so, football finance expert Kieran Maguire has revealed that it will cost close to £900 ($1,000) to complete the entire Qatar 2022 collection.
Panini has upped the price of 5-sticker packs for this year's World Cup to 90p, that is an increase of the 80p packs for the 2018 Russia World Cup.
The Panini World Cup 2022 sticker album is out. It's 90p for 5 stickers and there are 670 to collect. That works out as £120.60 if you have collect all and swap all spares, but if no swapping then based on probability will cost you £883.80 pic.twitter.com/o4626AaMmX— Kieran Maguire (@KieranMaguire) August 28, 2022
Meanwhile, the cost of packs for the 2016 Euros was just 50p.
With the Qatar 2022 collection, there are a total of 670 stickers to unpack. Maguire says if you were to collect all the stickers without any duplicates - which is near impossible - then it will set you back £120.60 ($140.15).
However, based on a one in 669 chance of duplicate stickers, it could work out at around £883.80 ($1027.81).
A study done by Professor Paul Harper from Cardiff University in 2018 went into great detail on how much it costs to collect football stickers.
In the study, Harper found that with the 2018 World Cup collection, swapping stickers with ten friends could still set football fans back £247 ($287) on average to complete the album.
The professor said: "Filling an album has become progressively more expensive over the years since then, not just because there are typically more teams competing now, but because Panini have become more creative about allocating spaces."
It is also worth noting that if you are looking for that particular rare sticker, you can buy it directly from Panini, however, it will obviously cost more than if you were to obtain it in a pack.
Sticker lovers are enthusiasts, though, and buying that sought-after sticker can ruin the fun for many.
So, some may be asking why the price of Panini stickers have increased.
Well, an obvious one is the rise of inflation which is seeing prices of a lot of things skyrocket at the moment.
Another one is that the sticker provider has to pay a fee to FIFA to put the players on stickers.
Panini also have to negotiate individual deals with the relevant football associations to get the right to use the shirt and badges.
So, it's looking set to be an expensive few months coming up for all of those football sticker fanatics out there...