In July of 2014, a prophetic poster on the BlowoutCards forums submitted a thread titled “Panini Flawless Soccer.” Members flocked to the thread looking for whatever information they could find, but instead of a release date and preview images they just found a passionate collector asking for a favor: “Can someone with exceptional graphic design skills please make me a custom Flawless card of Cristiano Ronaldo with a Portugal or Real Madrid Patch and Auto?”
Over the next week, thousands of members clicked on the thread and dozens commented with their thoughts on what the fictional product would look like. The general consensus was simple, though: If Panini America could manufacture a “Flawless” product with on-card autographs and match-used memorabilia from the world’s biggest soccer stars, it would be a huge hit. Little did they know what Panini America had in the works.
Read more: The Official Blog of Panini America