Flashback Product of the Week: John Player & Sons 1928-29 Footballer Set

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Like I said in my box break and review of 2015 Topps Major League Soccer, the MLS Minis are modeled after the John Player & Sons 1928-29 Footballer Set.

John Player & Sons was a tobacco and cigarette manufacturer from Nottingham, England, who’s roots can be traced back to the early 1830’s.  In 1893, they produced one of the first general interest sets in the UK simply called “Castles and Abbeys”.  After the success they had with the “Castles and Abbeys” set, future tobacco card inserts would feature film stars, models, nature scenes, military heroes, and sports figures.

In the United States, tobacco cards showcasing sports stars mainly dealt with baseball players.  Over in the UK though, you’d find football (soccer), rugby, boxing, tennis, and cricket.  The John Player & Sons 1928-29 Footballer Set is made up of 75 cards.  The first (50) were issued in October 1928, and the final (25) came out in February 1929.  Popular players in this set include Tom McDonald, Stanley Earle, David Jack, and Sam Cowan.  Even though these cards are old and were only available for a short time, they don’t carry much value today.  Individual cards that are in great condition sell for as little as a few dollars.  This set also includes rugby players, which could be the reason why collectors may not be that interested in it.  Sometimes dual-sport sets can do that.

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