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Live Football (Soccer) Manager through NFTs

The WAGMI (we’re all going to make it) United project from the NFT is unique. Most likely, it’s the only one of its kind. Holders of WAGMI United NFTs can’t show off a flashy PFP, but they can take part in running a real soccer (football) club.

WAGMI United bought the English Football League 2 team Crawley Town FC (fourth-highest division overall in the English football league system). Crawley Town is based in the town of Crawley, which is in the English county of West Sussex. The club was started in 1896.

On its website, WAGMI United says it has three goals:

to update old ways of running sports organizations.

to offer supporters a significant voice.

So that Crawley Town FC could move up to the Premier League (top division in the English football league system, meaning three promotions).

The WAGMI United project was started by Preston Johnson and Eben Smith. When they tried to buy fellow fourth-tier team Bradford City in December 2021, it was the first time they had tried and failed to buy an English soccer team. WAGMI United tried to buy Crawley again in April of this year. This time, they used traditional financing to do it.

WAGMI United says that this is the “football team of the internet.” The goal of the project is to show sports people how to use web3. Preston Johnson, one of the co-founders, has worked with web3. Johnson helped get a business called Pixel Vault off the ground in 2020. Pixel Vault is, in a nutshell, a large NFT collection of superheroes that aims to grow into a decentralized Marvel empire. About $200 million is how much Pixel Vault sells. In February of this year, venture capitalists gave it $100 million to help it grow.

This month, NFT by WAGMI United went on sale. For 0.35 ETH, people can buy what Johnson calls a “virtual season ticket.” The team says that the NFT mint price is based on the fixed costs that come with running a football club. It is an ERC-1155 token that has a lot of good things about it. Some of them are standard items, like limited-edition jerseys and access to behind-the-scenes player interviews. Some are more creative, like the promise of “special input and voting on the future.” For example, NFT members could vote last Friday on whether the team should improve its offense, midfield, or defense. People who have season tickets for Crawley are also welcome to join. Here is a list of all the tools that are talked about in the discord.

The NFT sale is having trouble, which is partly because of how the market is doing as a whole. Out of the 10,000 pieces that need to be made, 1,937 still need to be struck. The price on OpenSea has already dropped to 0.15 ETH, which is less than half of what each piece cost at the mint, which was 0.35 ETH. But the project has already raised about 2,822 ETH, which is almost $4 million USD and a lot of money for a League Two team like Crawley.

NFTs are often sold by football teams these days. For example, FC Barcelona plans to show off its first NFT piece, “In a way, eternal.” It is a piece of digital art that looks like the famous flying kick and goal by Johan Cruyff in 1973. It will be sold at Sotheby’s New York at the end of this week.

Fans of football, on the other hand, don’t buy these NFTs. Liverpool, a football team with a long history, worked with Sotheby’s in April of this year to raise $12.8 million by selling up to 171,072 NFTs at $75 each. The NFTs were pieces of digital art that showed famous Liverpool players like Mohamed Salah. Liverpool’s controversial NFT sale ended with only 9,721 pieces, or 5.7% of the stock, being sold.

Unlike the other clubs, WAGMI United wants to sell a football club to people who like NFTs instead of trying to sell NFTs to football fans.

WAGMI United hopes that NFTs will help the team gain new fans from far away. The founder talked about the project’s goal in an interview with the Independent last month.

Johnson says that many NFT projects“A lot of NFT projects are just speculation with no real tangible spine, no real true story,”

“Having a football club to root for every week? That’s a spine that people attach themselves to. In many of these NFT projects, the only reason you do them is to make money. So many plans are based on nothing more than guesswork. With Crawley Town, no.”

“A lot of these NFT projects, you’re just trying to flip an NFT to make money. There are so many projects driven by pure speculation. Not with Crawley Town.

“Even if our NFT prices go to zero, I will know as a buyer the money I spent is helping to sustain a club that I’m rooting for.

“It’s going towards the wage bill, towards better infrastructure, to decrease season-ticket pricing for the local community.”

Since it was bought, WAGMI United has been very busy.

First, they got a new manager, Kevin Betsy, and a few new players, including Dom Telford, who had scored the most goals in League Two the year before. Then they made a deal with Adidas for uniforms and clothing. Also, they have a deal with a streaming service to make a documentary about their first year in charge.

In the season before, about 2,300 people went to each game in Crawley on average. 900 kits were sold. At the moment, 42,300 people follow WAGMI United on Twitter, 26,623 people use Discord, and 5,400 people have tokens. In fact, there are a lot of people who like WAGMI United (even though a certain percentage are pure speculators with no long term interest). Due to the amount of money made, Crawley is in a good position to move up to League 1 this season, at least in terms of money. If that happens, we might be seeing a real football-NFT Cinderella story, which could bring in more fans and help the club do even better.

The WAGMI United NFT does not show ownership of the Crawley football club, which is one bad thing about ownership. Holders won’t get stock certificates, unlike in the past when money was raised (for example, Spanish football club SD Eibar raised 1.9 million euros in the form of small donations from 50 countries worldwide in 2014 and granted stock certificates to donors). There is also not a lot of clarity about how governance works. Even though the community votes on some things, many decisions are made behind the scenes.

Even when the market is going up, people will be more interested in the unique services that WAGMI United offers. Even though it has problems, it is an interesting project with a lot of promise. Future crowdfunding projects that use NFTs will learn a lot from WAGMI United, whether it succeeds or fails. And there is no doubt that it is better than the traditional pump-and-dump PFP operations that are common in the area right now.

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The post Live Football (Soccer) Manager through NFTs appeared first on NFT News Pro.

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