Friday 26 December 2014

The price of the World Cup? It's about half of Ronaldo's salary

Published 10/06/2014 | 02:30

Spain are current world champions
Spain are current world champions
The original World Cup which was stolen

IT may be the most sought-after item in world football, with an aura and a status that is beyond measure.

But there is so little precious metal in the World Cup that the actual gold in the trophy is worth less than €150,000.

A sum of that size would only pay half of the weekly wage of Real Madrid and Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, Dublin-based GoldCore, a precious metal brokerage, has worked out.

And the iconic trophy is not even made with 24 karat gold, according to Mark O'Byrne of the Dublin-based broker.

Winning the World Cup may be worth a fortune to the lives of the successful footballers and could inspire a spending spree in the winning country. But the golden trophy is made of 18 karat gold, which means it is just 75pc pure gold, Mr O'Byrne said.

This means that its melt value – if it was to be melted down to make jewellery – is low.

It stands just 36.8cm high, weighs 218 troy ounces and is made of solid 18 karat gold.

He said that World Cup fever was building but football's best were battling for a trophy of just 6kg of almost pure gold, worth €150,000.

"This is barely enough to pay some soccer stars for a week. Ronaldo, the Real Madrid European Cup winner, is currently earning more than €370,000 per week," the gold expert said.

"However, to the national heroes who lift the historic trophy after winning the final on Sunday, July 13, and to their jubilant fans, winning the World Cup will be priceless," he said.

The original trophy was the Jules Rimet but in 1974 it became the FIFA World Cup Trophy.

The initial trophy was an amalgamation of gold-plated sterling silver and a deep blue coloured semi-precious stone.

Mr O'Byrne said it was a beautiful piece but it was stolen in 1983 and there was no trace of it since then.

The present World Cup's design is by Italian artist Silvio Gazzaniga.

The name of the country whose national team wins each tournament is engraved on the bottom of the trophy.

Irish Independent

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