CHAMPIONS LEAGUE 2020/21 (Topps)

EDICOLA NEWS: THE REVIEWS nr. 154
stickers: 582 (numbering per team)
starter pack: album + 3 packets € 3.90
packets: € 1.00 (10 stickers)

The long-awaited Champions League album was also released in Italy. The latest one made by Topps? These are the rumors of “radio figurine”, we will see. It certainly doesn’t look like a farewell album (just think of the havoc of the latest Topps albums on the Premier League), instead it is made in an interesting way, even with some flaws, some repeated over the years.

The mother of all problems is always that of the layout of the album, being linked to a specific tournament, the division of the clubs for the various groups is greatly missed. The order of the teams is by country, Spain, England, Italy, Germany, France, Russia, followed by all the others. Or rather the few others because the clubs from the play-offs are relegated to the bottom of the album in cold and abstract pages.

Too bad because the graphic layout of the other pages is interesting, large photos of two (or three) top players, valid captions to learn about the history of the club in the Champions League and in the national championship of the previous year. Graphics that are not repeated the same in the most photographic part, for some clubs we have two champions compared, in others the trio of the most prolific scorers of the previous season, for others the historical graphics of the last 10 years.

Another particular caption is that relating to the 20 players team by team where the first appearance in the major European competition is highlighted, this also involves a lot of “debut season” writings.

The page is completed by the special badge of the club and the giant one of a top player, compared to last year we no longer find the stickers of the stadiums and the kits are printed directly in the album.

The pages of the teams coming from the POF cannot be commented on, frankly they are small, certainly they have a different effect with the stickers attached, but it remains an absolutely questionable choice, even if it is true that this year, due to Covid, the qualifications lasted longer. expected.
After all, even the club squads are dated and this is even more annoying if you want. While understanding the technical times for printing stickers, an album as important as that of the Champions League should be treated better.

In a period where there is so much interest in the new stars of world football, the “rising stars” page with players from the main European leagues is an apt choice, the Inter defender Alessandro Bastoni representing Serie A and Italian football.

Already used in the past, also by Panini for Fifa365 and also for Euro2020 Preview, the numbering of stickers by team and theme has no advantage other than a useless complication in collecting the album. We don’t like it, maybe others think differently.

A key note is Topps’ choice to offer a packet for 1.00 euro with 10 stickers, a policy also followed in the Topps album of F1 and the Bundesliga. Devastating impact on the “figurine” market, really interesting and excellent choice. We hope others follow the line, especially in albums where the quality of the stickers is similar or sometimes even worse. Another detail is the quality of the album paper, good when compared to that of other albums of this period.

If Topps is quitting the Champions League (all to be verified), let’s say he’s leaving the competition with a certain style. If it continues, we hope it will finally know how not to repeat some errors and settings that collectors have been complaining about since 2016.

(EN)