Football Fans’ Fury Over UEFA Souvenir Book Bungle

Furious football fans have condemned an official UEFA Euros souvenir sticker book after it emerged that they missed out many top players in a mix-up over publishing rights.

American stickerbook makers Topps took over the contract for the German book from Panini, who had held the rights since 1970.

But fans and collectors are baffled over the number of bizarre substitutions they have included to apparently cover the gaps in the book for the 2024 tournament.

And it emerged that there could be similar problems with other sticker books in countries like England, France and Italy.

The books have become beloved by fans and many children save their pocket money to buy stickers of their favourite stars.

The new book, which can cost EUR 180 to complete, features former Mannschaft captain Oliver Kahn, 54, who has been retired since 2008.

Not only that, he is the only goalkeeper listed in the book for the entire 18-man national squad, according to German media.

Picture shows apparently the errors in the album, undated. The popular sticker album is brought to the market by Topps. (Newsflash)

Worse, at least four star players – Mario Goetze, Karim Adeyemi, Youssoufa Moukoko and Malick Thiaw – have their own stickers even though they have not made the squad.

And stars Toni Kroos, Manuel Neuer and Florian Wirtz, who have been selected by coach Julian Nagelsmann have been left out.

It emerged in German media that the problem has been caused by Topps not having the rights to use some players’ photos.

Panini, they report, still has close ties to FAs and governing bodies in England, Germany, France and Italy.

As a result, the German FA’s coat of arms does not appear in the new stickerbook and is substituted by the German national flag.

Topps admitted the gaffes but blamed Panini for the gaps.

They said: “We are disappointed that a few players are missing.

“This is due to the fact that the former sticker partner of the tournament has locked up certain parts of the collection to the detriment of the fans.

Picture shows popular sticker albums, undated. The popular sticker album is brought to the market by Topps. (Newsflash)

“In contrast to the former sticker partner, we feel obliged to the fans and believe that the offer of stickers and cards – as well as the selection of current and former players – will inspire everyone for the tournament.”

Many fans, however, do not agree.

Collectors and football fans took to social media to vent their frustration.

One said: “You don’t even know where to start. A desolate selection. And then just three ‘legends’ as fillers. Ugh…”

And another added: “Nice that out of 18 players maybe seven or eight will end up going to the tournament.”

To find out more about the author, editor or agency that supplied this story – please click below.
Story By: Joseph GolderSub-EditorJoseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash

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