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Barcelona‘s ‘In a Way, Immortal’ non-fungible token, which is the first NFT in the club’s history and celebrates Johan Cruyff, sold for $693,000 at an auction at Sotheby’s in New York on Friday.
The audiovisual digital art NFT aesthetically recreates a goal scored by Cruyff, who later became the club’s coach, against Atletico Madrid in 1973.
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In addition to ownership rights of the NFT, the winner of the auction will also be named a digital ambassador at the Catalan club and be entitled to other benefits, including access to training sessions.
“The Barca digital ambassador will also be able to enjoy a number of ‘money can’t buy’ experiences,” a statement read.
“Barcelona will incorporate in the NFT’s smart contract a set of utilities such as meet and greets, visits to [Barcelona’s academy] La Masia, hospitality rights (for a minimum of five years), the right to play at Spotify Camp Nou and an official handover of the ball before a friendly match.”
‘In a Way, Immortal’ retells Cruyff’s goal in a molten gold animation that was created by a 40-strong team of computer graphics and visual effects artists who work in Hollywood.
The 40-second film is accompanied by an original soundtrack played by a 30-piece orchestra, incorporating real sounds from Camp Nou stadium and Barca supporters.
Cruyff, who died in 2016, played for Barca from 1973-1978 and returned to coach the club in 1988, helping them win their first European Cup in 1992 in addition to four league titles.
Beyond the trophies, he is considered one of the guardians of the club’s playing style and philosophy.
“The NFT will be forever linked to my father’s legacy,” said Cruyff’s son Jordi, who also played for Barca and works as a sporting advisor at the club.
“He would have been fascinated to see that one of his most beautiful goals with Barca has been the inspiration to create this unique piece of digital art that we hope will be enjoyed, admired and remembered forever.”
Various clubs and athletes across sports have stepped into the NFT market.
Former Barca star Lionel Messi released a series of images from his career as NFTs last year, while a record was set in February when an NFT featuring Manchester City striker Erling Haaland sold for more than $600,000, smashing a record that had been held by an NFT of Cristiano Ronaldo.


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