The trading card industry is booming in just about every respect, but the rise of women’s sports cards over the last two years is a whole new ballgame.
Ever tried checking in on what’s trending across the sports trading card market on eBay? If you’ve logged on recently, you’ve noticed that cards featuring female athletes are exploding in popularity, with tennis and soccer cards seeing especially serious jumps.
On an individual basis, names like US Soccer star Alex Morgan and tennis icon Serena Williams have led the push in their respective sports, with both of their card prices up more than 11,000% since 2019 according to the latest data from eBay.
Yeah, read that number again if you have to.
The WNBA is still the queen among women’s leagues overall, however. As Sports Collectors Daily notes, eBay sales for WNBA cards have risen 1,100% in the past two years.
“In women’s sports, individual athletes have historically had stronger brands and larger followings than their respective teams. Social media has allowed these athletes to directly connect with their fans, and the trading card boom is providing further validation that these athletes have a much larger reach than people suspect,” Just Women’s Sports founder and CEO Haley Rosen told Boardroom Breakers. “Investors are also betting on the future of women’s sports, which are rapidly forcing their way into the mainstream.”
Alex Morgan’s 1-of-1 autographed Immaculate Collection Soccer is the most expensive women’s sports trading card sold on eBay to date, fetching $16,000. Serena is not far behind, with her 2003 Netpro Tennis Rookie PSA 10 going for more than $14,000 on the platform.
Speculation is alive and well here, with an increasing number of collectors chasing after up-and-coming tennis champ Naomi Osaka’s cards. Per eBay’s latest data, Osaka-related searches jumped by more than 500% between January and February. Investors are also backing the No. 1 2020 WNBA Draft pick, Sabrina Ionescu of the New York Liberty, as she has already become one of the most coveted names on the market after breaking a laundry list of NCAA records at Oregon.
On the subject of other breakout athletes to look out for, Just Women’s Sports’ Rosen has her sights set on the reigning World Cup champs. “[Y]ou have to look at the younger players on the US Women’s National Soccer Team. After this [next] Olympics, there will be a huge cycling of talent on the senior team, and a new generation will take center stage.”
Ineed, with rising stars like Rose Lavelle only getting better and better for the US women, trading card enthusiasts have even more exciting opportunities in store. By the time the 2023 World Cup rolls around in Australia, there’s no telling just how hot the women’s sports trading card market will be.