The Best Darwin Nunez Rookie Cards: Guide

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Darwin Nunez was on the radar of soccer card collectors early on in his professional career, after an impressive breakthrough 2020-21 season.

For me, his best rookie card is his 2020-21 Panini Obsidian card, which is also the most expensive to buy; He has some alternative options as well – I’ve covered them all below.

Table of Contents

The Best Darwin Nunez Rookie Cards

2020-21 Panini Obsidian Darwin Nunez #36

2020-21 Panini Obsidian Darwin Nunez Rookie Card #36

The 2020-21 Panini Obsidian card is Darwin Nunez’s best rookie card, in my opinion, which is also the most expensive to buy, because of its popularity and scarcity.

Obsidian is one of the higher-end Panini soccer card products, and the serial-numbered base cards are sought-after.

This one is limited to only 195 base copies, with some parallel options; The rarest and most coveted parallel is the 1-of-1 Electric Etch Blue Finite version. In 2023, a copy of the Electric Etch Contra parallel (/9) sold for $1.13k, graded PSA 10.

2020-21 Panini Futebol Darwin Nunez #52

Panini Futebol 2020 Darwin Nunez

Darwin Nunez’s very first release, so his true rookie, is this Panini sticker from the 2020-21 Futebol set, featuring teams and players from the Portuguese Premier league.

As with most Panini stickers, the design is quite basic, showing a headshot of Nunez in a Benfica jersey and his height, weight and date of birth.

It’s not easy getting hold of the sticker, but they are out there. They were released mainly in Portugal, so Portuguese collectors are the best bet in finding one to buy. 

It’s one of the most popular and valuable Nunez rookie options.

2020-21 Topps On Demand UCL Summer Signings Darwin Nunez #DANU

This is considered one of the top Darwin Nunez card to own by many, including me. It’s his first card, because the Futebol release was a sticker, so it’s a sought-after option.

It has a clean design, showing Darwin playing for Benfica, with a cool blue background and a UEFA Champions League logo – It’s also his first UCL release.

The card can be brought for a very reasonable price on the secondary market when you consider the potential Darwin has.

2020-21 Topps Match Attax UEFA Europa League Hat-trick Hero Darwin Nunez #HTH1

2020 Topps Match Attax UEFA Europa League Hat-trick Hero Darwin Nunez

Darwin Nunez had a couple of Match Attax cards released by Topps in the 2020-21.

However, I think this Hat-trick hero card is the nicer card of the two, and will probably be more popular than the Time To Shine card.

Match Attax cards aren’t generally the most popular among soccer collectors, so they don’t hold much value – they’re generally aimed at a young audience, which gives them a slightly ‘childish’ design.

The card has two images of Nunez in a Benfica jersey and, as with all Match Attax cards, includes attribute stats.

2021-22 Panini CONMEBOL Copa America Darwin Nunez #URU23

Another sticker released as part of a Panini set. This one was for the 2021 Copa America (originally meant to be held in 2020) – the major international tournament for South American national teams.

Although Uruguay under-performed in the tournament, after being eliminated on penalties by Colombia, the sticker will hold significance for Darwin, because it’s his first international team release.

Again, Panini stickers tend to have a very basic design, and that is true for this one – it shows a headshot of Nunez in his Uruguay jersey.

This one is easier to get hold of than the 2020-21 Panini Futebol sticker.

2021-22 Topps UEFA Champions League Darwin Nunez #407

2021 Topps UEFA Champions League Darwin Nunez

This one is another Darwin Nunez sticker, released by Topps as part of the 2021-22 UCL set.

Similarly to the Panini stickers, it has quite a basic design with a headshot of Nunez in a Benfica jersey and a clean looking Champions League background with the UCL logo included.

2021-22 Topps Merlin Heritage 97 UEFA Champions League Darwin Nunez #97

2021 Topps Merlin Heritage 97 UEFA Champions League Darwin Nunez

Another Topps card for Nunez, this one was released in the Topps Merlin Heritage 97 set which is also for the UEFA Champions League – the main base cards feature the retro Merlin Premier League 97 stickers design.

Many of the cards released in the set have parallels or autographed cards, however Darwin Nunez just has a base card.

What Is The Most Expensive Darwin Nunez Rookie Card?

The most expensive Nunez rookie to buy is his 2020-21 Panini Obsidian card, which has a base card serial-numbered to only 195 copies, and some lower-numbered parallels.

A copy of the Electric Etch Contra parallel (/9) has sold for as much as $1.13k before, and the base card has sold as high as $325, graded SGC 9.5.

What Is Darwin Nunez’s True Rookie Card?

Darwin Nunez’s first release was his Panini sticker from the 2020-21 Futebol set, for the Portuguese league, making it his true rookie card.

Is Darwin Nunez’s Rookie Card A Good Investment?

I think with his current rookie card prices being so low, it’s a good low risk play for soccer card investors.

Darwin Nunez is without doubt one of soccer’s most exciting prospective young forwards. As I mentioned earlier, he’s not considered within the same category as the likes of Haaland and Mbappe, but he’s got the potential to be a top player.

Darwin Nunez: A Background

Darwin Nunez was one of the most exciting young forwards in world soccer when he was first breaking through. The tall, athletic striker has a surprising burst of speed for his size.

Nunez is Uruguayan, and he had big shoes to fill, with the two legendary Uruguay forwards, Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez, coming to the end of their career.

Born in 1999, Darwin Nunez started really making a name for himself in the 2020-21 soccer season when he moved to Portuguese giants, Benfica, at the age of 21 for a club record transfer fee of around $25m, making him the most expensive signing in Portuguese league history at the time. 

It was the 2021-22 season that Darwin really started to establish himself as one of the world’s most exciting young players – scoring 34 goals in 41 games, including his first goals in the UEFA Champions League.

In 2022, he got a big move to the English Premier League, when Liverpool paid around $109m for him.

Although he isn’t considered in the same tier as the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Erling Haaland and even Dusan Vlahovic, he’s certainly a good forward of his era.

Tom Flint

Tom Flint

A long-time collector of sports cards, Tom mainly collects soccer World Cup Prizm cards these days. As a kid, he enjoyed collecting baseball cards. He's a huge sports fan, with lots experience and passion for sports card collecting.
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