lunedì 10 marzo 2014

Topps Premier League 2014

Topps Premier League 2014 is the latest chapter of the Topps saga dedicated to the English Premier League. The album style is similar to the 2013 edition: the cover is soft and the total number of stickers (352) is significantly reduced compared to few years ago. The reduced number of players per team (12) means that some interesting players (especially young prospects) are not included. However, this collection introduces an innovative concept, the "Pro 11" players, which are related to an online game: on the official Topps website it is possible to collect virtual stickers (with the code found behind the Pro 11 stickers) to build its own team and compete with other collectors. It is possible to win special gold stickers.
The album opens as usual with the table of contents on the left, foreword and first two stickers on the right: the Premier league logo and the trophy. This year these stickers are normal and not silver shining. The 20 teams are showed in alphabetical order and for each team there are 16 stickers: the club badge (shining sticker), the coach, the squad (double sticker) and 12 players

In the center of the album we find a double page with the 2013/14 kits: 10 stickers with the home uniforms of each team. The album continues with 4 pages of Topps Pro 11 players: 20 shining stickers (one per team) of some of the best players of the league, each one associated to a code (on the back of each sticker) to unlock the player on the online game. Among these stickers we find Ozil (Arsenal), Bellamy (Cardiff), Oscar (Chelsea), Sturridge (Liverpool), Negredo (M. City), Van Persie (M. United), Eriksen (Tottenham), Osvaldo (Southampton).

Even if the number of player for each team is limited to 12, there are included in the album some young talents that have positively impressed this season and could become top players in the coming years. We can mention Wilshere (Arsenal, 1992), Bacuna (Aston Villa, 1991), Caulker (Cardiff, 1991), Lukaku (Everton, 1993), Barkley (Everton, 1993), Kasami (Fulham, 1992), Brady (Hull, 1992), Coutinho (Liverpool, 1992), Santon (Newcastle, 1991), Redmond (Norwich, 1994), Luke Shaw (Southampton, 1995), Ben Davies (Swansea, 1993), Joe Shelvey (Swansea, 1992), Eriksen (Tottenham, 1992), Townsend (Tottenham, 1991), Ravel Morrison (West Ham, 1993).
Of the same age we have to consider also Hazard (Chelsea, 1991) and Oscar (Chelsea, 1991) that standed out already last season.   

The sticker of the Portuguese manager Mourinho

Maybe the best player of the league: Luis Suarez

Update (April 2014): I managed to win some Topps Gold stickers in the online game. These are actually thick cards with the name of the player in the back. A great and rare product from Topps!

Album details
Full Name: Topps Premier League 2014
Publisher: Topps
League: English Premier League
Number of teams: 20
Stickers per team: 16
Special Sections:   -Logo and Trophy (2 stickers)
                              - 2013/14 Kits (10 stickers)
                              - Topps Pro 11 (20 stickers)

Total number of stickers: 352

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