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Footballers José Fonte and Eder launch NFTs


European champions and Portuguese Internationals José Fonte and Éder are the first two footballers worldwide to launch their own non-fungible tokens (NFTs), creating unique and authentic digital art pieces that will be auctioned online. 

The two NFTs were made in partnership with Jedi3 and part of the revenues raised through the auction will revert to social and community support. The creations will be auctioned on the well-known platform of NFTs, OpenSea.

The creative concept of both pieces was developed by the athletes themselves together with the project Jedi3. Fonte focused his illustration on his career path and all the obstacles he had to overcome in order to become an international player and win EURO 2016. Eder’s piece is a digital creation of the boot he used to score the winning goal for Portugal in the final of the European Championship against France.

In this first launch, there will be:

• 10 limited digital editions of Éder’s right boot that scored the Euro final goal, in a digital 3D version;

• 10 limited digital editions of an illustration that represents the path followed by José Fonte until the title in the Euro;

• Furthermore, a “masterpiece” of Éder’s boot that will give the right to the digital item plus the real boot he used to score the winning goal in the final.

The week-long auction is now underway on the Open Sea platform with all transactions to be made in ether cryptocurrency. Fonte and Eder follow in the footsteps of NFL and NBA players who have already participated in the creation of NFTs.

Fonte says: “Everybody follows what is going on in the US with NFTs, and I’ve been following it too for the last few months. Some of my favourite people are exploring this new world, this new connection with the fans. I tried to explore this connection with the fans, to give them something that is new and authentic. This creation means a lot to me, because the story of it is about my career, about what I’ve been through in my life. It’s about resilience, showing determination and never giving up and showing that anything is possible with hard work. I’m excited. I want the fans to be open minded. First of all, it’s for a good cause as well. Part of the money will go into some foundations and institutions that we want to help. We want to give something back to the people, which is really important to us.”

Eder says: “It’s a fantastic world. It’s been booming in the US because of the NFTs that have been created in the NBA. José Fonte and I expect to be the first football players to launch an NFT in the world. An NFT is unique, has value for the person that creates it, it’s art and I think that has a lot of value for the fans. We’ve participated in a big victory at the Euros and I know our fans will be amazed by a creation like this. My creation means a lot to me and to Portugal. It’s the boot that scored the winning goal at the final and it’s really important to me. It’s something that the football fans will appreciate. Another important reason is helping an institution that we will give part of the funds to. It’s something important to do and a big step.”

Part of the profits from the auction of each of the pieces will revert to charities and community institutions. Éder will benefit PAJE – platform of support to young former foster children, association of which he is godfather and partner. Regarding José Fonte, the focus will be the community of Penafiel, where he was born, by donating funds to the local Firefighters corporation, where his grandfather was the 2nd Commander, to the ERPI – Estrutura Residencial para Idosos de Penafiel, and the APADIMP – Associação de Pais e Amigos dos Diminuídos Mentais de Penafiel. The Lille central defender will also donate funds to support football in Portugal to institutions yet to be defined.

João Matos Cruz, from Jedi3, says: “This project is born from the fusion of diverse interests of a group of friends: football, blockchain and digital art. In a context where the technology of distributed registration allows to protect, authenticate and promote, for example, artists’ work, or relevant moments, we felt it was time to give visibility, in the digital world, to two iconic figures in the history of Portuguese football: Éder Lopes and José Fonte. In the first case, through the boot with which he scored the goal of the Euro 2016 final, as a masterpiece of a moment of collective transcendence. In the case of José Fonte, illustrating his path that was also one of overcoming, of constant struggle against adversity, until the final consecration as European champion.”

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