Category: Signing Sessions

Behind the Signing: Roberto Carlos and Rivaldo sign for Icons!

Here at Icons.com, we are very lucky to get to work with the world’s best footballers. It’s something we’re immensely proud of and at our most recent signing session we added two new names to our unbeatable roster. So, here’s what happened when we met the legendary Brazilian duo of Roberto Carlos and Rivaldo.

The summer is a busy time of year in the world of football. Though there’s little to no action on the pitch, clubs across the country and around the world are hard at work signing players for the season ahead. But, on Friday July 14th, in a plush hotel in central London, Icons.com captured the signatures of the two summer recruits to beat them all. We signed Brazilian legends Roberto Carlos and Rivaldo.

Known the world over for their style and flair on the pitch, this iconic pair were two of the world’s very best players during the 90s and 00s. Meeting the duo for the first time was an eye-opening experience as we shared time between their duties at the Star Sixes tournament – a meeting of some of the greatest names in world football.

It was an early start for us all but by 9am we were buzzing to meet two absolute legends. First up: Roberto Carlos.

The signing happened very quickly, as we got word the former Real Madrid full-back was ready for action. Instructed to nip up to the 11th floor and join him in his room, our team – well-versed in the art of a speedy signing session – got things underway. As self-confessed kit nerds, seeing all sorts of historic shirts, boots, balls and photos was a sight to behold. But seeing them personally signed by a FIFA World Cup and three-time UEFA Champions League winner made it all the more exciting.

During this time, we reflected on what a great player Roberto Carlos was; a truly unique defender who lit up the game. How much would the powerful defender cost in 2017, we wonder? A stalwart of Real Madrid, Carlos still holds Los Blancos‘ record for appearances made by a foreign player. No mean feat when you consider the Galaticos that have passed through that great club.

After a few quick pictures with Roberto we were out the door ready and raring for the arrival of Rivaldo.

As we got the lift down to the lobby, former Liverpool, West Ham and Portsmouth goalkeeper David James stepped in to greet us. The legendary England shot stopper had a quick chat with our team and we wished him luck for the tournament. Luck that didn’t quite catch, mind, as an England team even featuring Steven Gerrard couldn’t win the tournament on home soil. We make it 51 years of hurt now…

Of course, our team are no strangers to footballing superstars but a day up close and personal with this many legends of the game was still one to relish. Topping it off: FC Barcelona and AC Milan hero Rivaldo.

A true gentleman, the 1999 Ballon d’Or winner breezed through our signing session with every bit of the class he brought to the football pitch. Still as lean and fit as ever, the legendary attacker gave great care and attention to the products he was signing – fastidiously dotting his i’s and paying particular regard to ensuring he signed with the correct squad number. We signature buffs loved that!

Adding his beautiful autograph to a superb collection of items, it was time for Rivaldo to be whisked away to face China at the nearby O2 Arena. Three-nil or four-nil for Brazil, we asked. It wouldn’t be that easy, he replied quite diplomatically.

It was 7-0.

 

For our full range of Rivaldo and Roberto Carlos signed products check out Icons.com now!

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It’s official! Eden Hazard joins the Icons family!

Icons Shop Limited is delighted to announce that Eden Hazard has signed an exclusive deal with the world’s leading signed football memorabilia company.

A fans’ favourite, the Chelsea and Belgium star is twice a Premier League winner and will feature in Icons’ flagship memorabilia ranges: our official UEFA Champions League range and official FIFA World Cup collection.

Hazard commented: “It is great to be part of the Icons family and I am looking forward to working with them for the coming season, especially with the 2018 World Cup in Russia coming up.”

The new exclusive Eden Hazard signed range will be sold on Icons.com and its sister site a1sportingmemorabilia.co.uk, as well as on FIFA.com, UEFA.com and in Harrods.

Icons was awarded the world’s first ever signed football memorabilia licence by FIFA in 2010 to produce a range of signed iconic World Cup products. In July 2012, we were awarded the first ever official licence for the UEFA Champions League and last year announced a licensing deal with the England FA. We have exclusive contracts with the world’s most famous international and UK players such as Lionel Messi and Dele Alli and enjoy long term relationships with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Diego Maradona and Neymar Jr.

Dan Jamieson, CEO of Icons, said: “Icons’ promise is that our products are “signed by the world’s best” and Eden is certainly one of the world’s best footballers. It’s a match made in heaven.

“We are delighted that Eden is now an Icon and we can bring a 100% authentic signed memorabilia range to his fans around the world. Authenticity is everything to us, as it is everything to our customers.”

Having swept four trophies in five seasons since joining Chelsea from French side Lille in the summer of 2012, Eden Hazard has developed into one of the Premier League‘s most exciting and most technically-gifted players. Collecting numerous individual awards along the way, Hazard‘s explosive style has attracted a multitude of praise from fellow professionals, managers, coaches, fans and pundits alike.

His talent was no more evident than in 2014-15 when, as leading light for Belgium, he reached the quarter-finals of the 2014 FIFA World Cup before returning to England to win the Premier League and the Capital One Cup as well as the PFA and FWA’s Player of the Year awards.

A further title-winning turn in 2016-17 has cemented his place as one of the world’s most sought-after talents, a player of remarkable natural talent whose stock is only rising by the day.


Shop from our full range of 100% authentic Eden Hazard signed items by visiting Icons.com today…

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Anatomy of An Icons Signing: Behind The Scenes With FOOTY.com

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Earlier this year we invited our friends from the football price comparison site FOOTY.com to come with us to a signing with one of the world’s best footballers. It just so happened that player was Barcelona‘s Argentinean superstar and global phenomenon Lionel Messi. From the FOOTY.com blog, here’s what Michael Lowdon thought of one our sessions with the world’s best…

As I drove down the A1 in torrential rain to FOOTY.com HQ, another wet day in the North East lay ahead. Or so I thought. By 10pm I was in Barcelona, enjoying a warm night, as the atmosphere of the UEFA Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid spilled out of the Nou Camp and onto the city’s streets. Our friends over at Icons.com had given us an invite to join them in the Catalan capital to get an insight into the workings of a player signing session. The player in question: Mr Lionel Messi.

Home of one of the best club sides in the history of the game, with arguably the greatest player to have kicked a football, the journey to the airport required regular pinching.

Being a frequent visitor to the Icons.com website, I was intrigued to see what goes on behind the scenes at a signing. After meeting Ali and Ben at Heathrow, the first task was to help with checking in of a number of packed suitcases, all of which were full to the brink with Messi memorabilia to be signed. From his latest adidas boot collection to a range of Barcelona and Argentina shirtsUEFA Champions League balls and glossy photo prints, the Icons team took a wide range of products ready for the Argentine’s penwork.

Once we had landed in Barcelona, the breathless Catalan commentary of the night’s match blared through the taxi’s radio, as we used our best broken Spanish to get the driver on our side. The hotel Icons put us up in was a stone’s throw away from the Camp Nou, meaning towards the end of journey the surrounding streets were filled with endless queues of mopeds, carrying relieved and joyous Cules late into the night. After more trolley pushing and the hotel bellboy’s help, we retired to the hotel bar, filled with the debate between fans. A quick night cap and a briefing for the next day’s signing rounded off a day which had started with a quiet, rainy morning in the office.

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FOOTY.com check out our signing photos – a key for authenticity

With signing day upon us, there was no time for a lie in and we were locked away in the hotel’s store room, preparing the cases and deciding what needed to be taken as a priority. It was the “less glamourous side of the signings” I was told, but as a Messi disciple and football merch geek I was like a pig in muck! Selections of football shirts and boots were asking to be jumped into and drooled over. Composed and professional, I managed to hide my excitement, just. As the deadline loomed, we met player liaison officer Jesus, Icons Founder Edward and CEO Dan outside of the Barcelona training ground and dissected Atleti’s defensive resilience, which would help them later progress to the semi final. Bumping into Pep’s superstar agent brother Pere Guardiola and a handful of other important figures, the team were escorted into the training centre to get the session underway.

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Messi is delighted to receive a shirt signed by fellow Icon Wayne Rooney

Having been signed to Icons for over a decade, making it one of his longest running commercial relationships, Messi knows what to expect when he’s faced with another Icons memorabilia signing session and he quickly got about his business. Icons exclusively produce the official Messi signed range as part of their license with the Argentine superstar. He breaks from the rhythm of signing to get his photo lifting a signed Wayne Rooney shirt that he’s received from the England captain, smiling with that grin we’ve come to recognise after more than 500 career goals.

The session draws to a close with Messi needed elsewhere – those five Ballon d’Ors won’t polish themselves you know. With yet another successful session in the bag, we retreat back to the hotel bar as the team celebrate. Messi is just one of a glittering list of current players which sign for Icons, including Neymar Jr, Luis Suarez, Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, Sergio Aguero and many more. Not a bad forward line to have on your books! As the dust settles from the Messi signing, we relax with a meal in the shadow of La Sagrada Familia, unwinding as each Wolfsburg goal against Real Madrid raises a roar from the locals. We could get used to this!

Icons and FOOTY.com join the fans outside the Barcelona training ground

Icons and FOOTY.com join the fans outside the Barcelona training ground

It’s been a whirlwind 48 hours for FOOTY.com, but for Icons it’s simply another day at the office. They’ll do it all again before long, as they met Eric Cantona in Lisbon and Gareth Bale in Madrid before April comes to end. The team also reveal which players are on their radar to sign next, what affects their choice and whether the enigmatic Ronaldinho is within their grasp.

From logistically planned trolley runs to preparing products for smoother signings, it’s all in a day’s work, in the crazy job that is chasing footballers around the world. As FOOTY.com has come to realise, there’s a story behind every signing. We can’t thank Icons enough for inviting us along to their private signing session with the most in demand footballer on the planet. The care and effort they put into organising every aspect of the signing, from their planning, unrivalled authenticity they strive for and their relationships with players is something to be inspired by.

FOOTY.COM is the UK’s leading price comparison when it comes to everything football. We specialise in searching the web to bring you the best prices and biggest savings on products from boots to balls and everything in between. Shop with FOOTY.COM to pay less and play more!

Shop from our full range of official Lionel Messi signed items here.

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England’s Next Big Star! Dele Alli Becomes Icons’ First Summer Signing

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It took Dele Alli just six months to go from League One side Milton Keynes Dons to England’s next big thing. Six months. Such is the determination and natural talent of Tottenham Hotspur’s fearless box-to-box midfielder, just recently turned 20-years-old, that he has made the step up from third tier terrier to topflight superstar without skipping a beat.

Alli has a composure and assurance on the ball that belies his age and suggests a burgeoning talent some have already compared to Premier League legend Steven Gerrard. With ten goals and nine assists in what has been the mother of all breakout seasons, Alli has been deployed as a defensive midfielder, in a holding role, and shadowed the likes of forwards Harry Kane and Son Heung-Min. For many youngsters looking to forge a long career in the Premier League, this constant shifting and tinkering might have been unsettling. But very little appears to faze Alli.

With this in mind, it came as no surprise to our team that Alli would breeze into his first ever professional signing session, calm, cool and ready to sign our fantastic range of Tottenham and England shirts and photos, Adidas boots and UEFA Champions League balls.

While Alli signed our fantastic range of Spurs photos, we were reminded of his immediate impact on Pochettino’s exciting young squad this season. It was such a huge impact, in fact, that he won the 2015-16 PFA Young Player of the Year award. It was deserved recognition for a season in which the midfielder impressed so many onlookers, including global superstar and England legend David Beckham.

“He’s just jumping on the bandwagon,” a member of his team joked, with a broad smile spreading across his face. It was the first irreverent comment of an easy-going signing session with one of football’s coolest young talents, who joins the likes Lionel Messi Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar Jr and Sergio Aguero in signing with us before the age of 22.

Though Alli‘s Spurs were unable to catch runaway Premier League champions Leicester City – and we can still hardly believe we’re writing those words – the 2015-16 season will be regarded as one of the North London side’s very best. With UEFA Champions League qualification secured for 2016-17 and a feel-good factor around the club, Spurs fans could be forgiven for wishing away the summer.

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But before the club can embark on a new and exciting season, there is the little matter of UEFA EURO 2016, a competition to which Roy Hodgson will take Alli and several of his Spurs teammates in the hopes of chasing continental glory. And there is quiet optimism both in and around the dressing room.

Just days before Hodgson confirmed the 20-year-old’s place in the provisional 26-man squad for this summer’s festival of football in FranceAlli was keeping himself grounded. Adding his signature to this summer’s England home shirt and photos of his appearances against Estonia and GermanyAlli assured us he was still just hoping to make the squad, despite being one of only two players rated by the bookmakers as 1/100 shots to make the plane.

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That said, EURO 2016 fever is still very much bubbling under the surface. Major international tournaments will never fail to inspire and excite this football-mad nation but we at Icons can already feel a palpable sense of anticipation that this year may just be the year. If the exploits of Leicester and the meteoric rise to fame of our new signing have taught us anything about football in 2016, it’s that nothing is impossible.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves…

 

For our full range of Dele Alli signed products check out icons.com now!

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Look Who’s Back! Gareth Bale Completes His Fourth Icons Signing Session

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Here at Icons.com, we’re proud to say we work with the world’s best footballers. From Lionel Messi to Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar Jr to James Rodriguez, Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard, Luis Suarez and, of course, the greats of bygone years; Pele, Diego Maradona, Eric Cantona and many, many more. But no list of the world’s best and brightest can be complete without the most expensive player in the history of the game.

That’s why our team swapped the warmth and sunshine of North London with the dreary grey and rainy skies of Madrid to meet Welsh wing wizard Gareth Bale for yet another exclusive signing session. Arriving in Spain to the news that the race for La Liga supremacy was to get yet tighter after victories for each of the top three, we were far from surprised to find that all the locals wanted to talk about was football. Not that they ever need an excuse.

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Upon hearing that we were in town to meet the 27-year-old Real Madrid winger for a signing, the taxi drivers, barmen and hotel staff who help smoothen our journeys around the world were keen to stress the Welshman’s importance to a team still very much on the hunt for a league and UEFA Champions League double. History beckons for Gareth and his Castilian cohorts. Not only would a UEFA Champions League triumph bring the club the ultimate European glory for the 11th time, a La Liga title would have them move on to a record 33 Spanish championships.

And what with UEFA EURO 2016 on the horizon, it’s no wonder our friend was in high spirits.

To the dulcet tones of Tom Jones, our session began in earnest. Adding his signature to our fantastic range of brand new products, Gareth happily chatted away about life in the Spanish capital, the Premier League’s unlikely title tussle, his love for golf and, naturally, the challenges that lie ahead.Gareth-Bale-Photo-FramesAlthough there is much to look forward to, this was also a great time for Gareth to take a look back on some of the crowning moments of his sparking career. Signing our excellent range of 16 x 12 inch photos, the Welshman was reminded of his six momentous years at Tottenham Hotspur, where he scored 42 goals in 146 matches and won back-to-back PFA Players’ Player of the Year awards and the PFA Young Player of the Year and FWA Player of the Year. When asked about the race for the title in EnglandGareth admitted that although he wants his old club to claim top spot in the Premier League, he can’t help but be swept up in the incredible story that is Leicester City.

After all, this is a man who lives for sport. In fact, much of the signing session was spent discussing his other big passion in life: golf. While continuing to autograph our brand new range of Real Madrid and Spurs shirtsGareth spoke with great passion about his love for the game of golf; his amazement at Jordan Spieth’s collapse at The Masters a few months ago; his joy at seeing a British winner of that hallowed major; and his own experiences on the courses in and around the Spanish capital (the winger’s handicap is six, for those who are interested).

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“So, do you play any other sports?” Gareth is asked. “Well, football,” comes his cheeky response. We’re starting to get the feeling that Gareth is really loving life at the moment. And what with UEFA EURO 2016 not far off, the Cardiff-born speedster is extremely confident in Wales‘ chances. Laughing away as he shares in some friendly EnglandWales banter, Gareth says he expects his compatriots to spring a few upsets at this summer’s festival of football in France.

Having this season surpassed Gary Lineker to become La Liga’s all-time highest scoring Brit, Gareth has every reason to feel confident. After all, the world’s most expensive footballer is only getting better; scoring more goals, providing yet more stunning assists and coasting past full-backs with his ultra quick turn of pace. In GarethWales has one of the stars of the tournament. So, watch out England.

 

For our full range of Gareth Bale signed products check out icons.com now!

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Memorabilia signed by Gareth Bale



The Phenomenon Signs Again: Ronaldo Returns For Icons

 

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All the best footballers have nicknames. Lionel Messi is “The Flea”, Diego Maradona “The Golden Boy”, while Sergio “Kun” Aguero is named after a Japanese cartoon character. Then there’s Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima. He, rather aptly, is “The Phenomenon”. The three-time FIFA World Player of the Year was the star striker of a golden generation of Brazilian footballers who triumphed at the 2002 FIFA World Cup. And while those may have been the glory years for this outrageously talented number nine, wherever he went throughout his career – be it Internazionale or Real Madrid – Ronaldo just kept doing what he did best; scoring goals.

It’s exactly why the Brazilian has such a cult following even today, five years after his retirement from football. And because we at icons.com love bringing you products from the world’s greatest players, we made sure to get a wide range of fantastic items signed by The Phenomenon himself.

This, of course, is not the first time Icons have met with the now 39-year-old. We have, in fact, been working with Ronaldo for over thirteen years and since our last signing session, he’s been a busy man. A Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme and co-owner of North American Soccer League side Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Ronaldo still finds time to travel the world watching football and was only too happy to chat away about the game he loves.

All throughout our session the former Galactico striker was in a high spirits, laughing and joking with our team as he signed our selection of shirts, photos, boots and balls.

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Adding his signature to a number of items that serve to chronicle his outstanding career at the very top of the sport, Ronaldo seemed to be moved by our selection of photos, recalling great goals in FIFA World Cups, astonishing performances in the UEFA Champions League and remarkable personal honours from a career spanning eighteen years. In fact, he seemed to like a number of items so much that he asked our team if he could take a few away for himself.

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With a handful of goodies to remember another thoroughly enjoyable and successful signing session, Ronaldo bid us farewell and left to enjoy more of his his favourite city, Madrid, a place in which he spent five great years tearing up La Liga with his Galactico team-mates. That left our team with the all-important task of delivering the excellent variety of exciting products to icons.com for you to enjoy. With more coming over the next few days, keep an eye for our full range of Ronaldo signed products and take it from us; these are not-to-be-missed products from a true legend of football.

For our full range of Ronaldo signed products check out icons.com now!

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Memorabilia signed by Ronaldo



Kop Idol Jamie Carragher Signs For Icons

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It’s not hard to see why Jamie Carragher is so beloved by Liverpool fans. A fiercely loyal and remarkably determined competitor, “Carra” played 737 times during a career spanning sixteen seasons and not once did he turn out for a team other than the Reds. His devotion to the Anfield side notwithstanding, Jamie’s often underrated talent, leadership and charming everyman personality elevated him from stalwart central defender to a homegrown hero adored by the Kop.

For all these reasons and more, Icons were eager to meet with the man himself for a private signing session at the office of his charity, the 23 Foundation, on Wednesday January 27th – a mere day before Jamie’s thirty-eighth birthday.

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Lining the walls of the Foundation’s plush yet homely headquarters were a number of photos chronicling Jamie’s distinguished career in professional football. Striking images of a young Jamie sat alongside memories of Liverpool’s celebrated treble-winning season of 2000-01 and, of course, plenty of photos from that famous night in Istanbul.

As the signing began, Jamie happily chatted away about Liverpool’s penalty shoot-out victory over Stoke City in the previous evening’s Capital One Cup semi-final clash at Anfield. While talking up the Reds’ chances of winning the competition at the Wembley final on February 28th, Carra himself appeared on the television behind us. Joking with current Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp about injuries, Jamie suggested he could be brought back into the fold to help out the injury-ravaged squad. “I need players who can go for 120 minutes,” Klopp laughed.

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Though these days he may not be able to stay the course of a full match with extra time, Jamie was certainly more than capable of giving his all for 120 minutes – and more – back in his prime. On no occasion was this more true than on May 25th, 2005 in Istanbul. The events of that night, as Liverpool won the UEFA Champions League in the most dramatic style, will live long in the memory of any Red. That’s why we wanted to deliver signed products from Jamie that commemorate that incredible night; products like his front signed Istanbul shirt; the dual signed official programme; and the framed “2005 Champions League Winner” photo.

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With another successful signing winding down, Jamie revealed to us that he was to spend the weekend in Milan, watching the Derby della Madonnina at the San Siro. It came as no surprise that a man who has such an undying passion for football would want to spend the weekend of his birthday watching Inter take on AC in one of the sport’s biggest fixtures.

But what did shock us was the fact that Jamie would be going as a paying punter, a fan in the stands. Here is a man who has won nearly everything there is to win in the club game, has lifted Europe’s biggest trophy and is adored by one of the world’s biggest football clubs. Yet true to his roots, passionate and humble as ever, Carra would be back out on to the stands, watching the game he loves.

For our full range of Jamie Carragher signed products check out icons.com now!

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Memorabilia signed by Jamie Carragher



Manchester City Hero Sergio Aguero Signs Again For Icons

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Few goals in Premier League history have been as dramatic, as historically-significant, or as crucial to an individual player’s legacy as Sergio Aguero’s last-gasp title-winning strike for Manchester City on the final day of the 2011-12 season. That’s why, whatever this man does from now until the end of his time at the Etihad, he will always have a place in the hearts of City’s supporters. 

Regardless, Aguero continues to add to his legacy at Manchester City, as each passing season he adds more goals to his already overflowing tally, cementing his place among Europe’s most deadly strikers. In fact, there are few out-and-out strikers like him in world football today. Diminutive in stature, yet strong and agile, Aguero is one of the most astute finishers in the game.
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So, on December 18th 2015, on a bitterly cold and wet winter day just outside of Manchester, Icons met the man himself for a private signing session. The Argentine forward has a reputation for being somewhat of a cheeky chap – a man who always has a smile on his face and a boyish charm to his character. The Icons team found that to be spot on, as Sergio arrived at our session chirpy and chatty and ready to sign our wide range of Manchester City and Argentina shirts and photos, boots and balls.

We found Sergio was in particularly good spirits because of his impending return to first team action. The striker had been sidelined for four matches with an injury to his heel and revealed to our team his delight and excitement at being back in training, with an eye on the weekend’s crunch Premier League fixture with Arsenal. Joking away, Sergio also told us of his childhood love for teams that play in red. Though it seems ironic to hear now, Aguero began his career with his red-clad hometown club, Independiente, way back at the start of a professional career that is now closing in some thirteen years in duration.

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Before adding his autograph to a photo of his first major European triumph, the 2010 UEFA Europa League victory while at Atletico Madrid, Sergio happily signed a variety of excellent products that are available to buy right now on icons.com. Before sharing with our team his love for the NBA – and particular admiration for the league’s MVP, Steph Curry, and his team, the Golden State Warriors – Sergio began signing Manchester City memorabilia, namely 2015-16 home shirts, photos of his best performances for the Citizens and, of course, the 2011-12 home shirt.

This was the shirt in which Sergio scored his most famous goal to date and etched his name into Premier League history. Scoring in the dying seconds of City’s final match in the 2011-12 season to defeat Queens Park Rangers 3-2 and snatch the title off City’s rivals Manchester United, Aguero earned hero status and ended the Sky Blues’ 44-year wait for topflight glory. Along with memorable photos of that famous day, Sergio’s signed shirt looks fantastic framed – a superb gift for any true City fan.

For our full range of Sergio Aguero signed products check out icons.com now!

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Memorabilia signed by Sergio Aguero