Borussia M?nchengladbach midfielder Christoph Kramer has done what many Pokémon fans can only dream of. “It was always a childhood dream to have them all.” he tells SPORTbible, just days after helping his side pick up three points against Bundesliga side Arminia.
Believe it or not, the world of collecting Pokémon cards has never been so popular as we embark on the franchise’s 25th anniversary.
You only need to perform a quick Google search to find a first edition sealed base-set booster box – the pinnacle of box collecting – on the market for around $350,000–$400,000. In fact, a PSA GEM-MT 10 condition Charizard card recently sold for over $220,000 to former rapper and Twitch streamer Logic.
The fascinating world of Pokemon and the memorabilia that comes with it has become a serious hobby for millions of fans since it’s release in the mid 90’s, including Germany international and 2014 World Cup winner Kramer, who recently gave people a glimpse into his impressive collection.
I mean, just look at it.
To the envy of every 90s kid going, former Bayer Leverkusen and VfL Bochum player Kramer is the proud owner of all 151 original cards, including that base set Charizard, which is currently on sale for a small fortune online.
Earlier this week, the midfielder opened up about his hobby and he, like so many of us reading this now, began collecting as a youngster.
”I guess every child born in the 90’s was a huge Pokémon fan,” Kramer tells SPORTbible. “It was great to collect the cards in primary school and it was always a kind of a childhood dream to have them all.
So how did he manage to catch ’em all? And what does his Gladbach teammates think of his collection?
”I have to say that I bought some cards aswell, but I didn’t pay lots.” Kramer says. “I don’t know exactly how much the value is, but I hope the time plays for me, like we would say in German. But I would never sell them.
”I think most of them [my teammates] did the same as a kid, but they gave their cards away and stopped collecting. But they say respect and congratulations to me!”
Image: Cristoph Kramer/Instagram
Image: Cristoph Kramer/Instagram
As you can see in the above photo, it appears Kramer has cards from the original Base, Jungle and Fossil sets.
We’ve also spotted a number of first edition cards amongst the 151, including a Dodrio and a Squirtle, as well as a rare promo Mew in the bottom right corner.
The 29-year-old revealed to us that his favourite Pokemon card is Simsala, otherwise known as Alakazam, and the hardest card to track down was of course Glurak, also known as Charizard.
But when asked if he prefer’s Pokemon over football, Kramer quickly played it down. “No of course not!” he says. “Pokémon is a childhood hobby. But football is my one and only passion.”
Borussia M?nchengladbach’s Twitter page soon got in on the act after Kramer posted the pictures to his Instagram, and it’s safe to say fans were impressed by the original collection.
”This app could exist for 1000 more years and I don’t think we’d top this picture of Germany international Christoph Kramer looking upon his complete collection of the original 151 Pokémon cards.” said Twitter user Phil Baki.
He might be right.
Gotta catch ’em all!
Christoph #Kramer shows off his collection of the original 151 @Pokemon cards :card_box:?#DieFohlen pic.twitter.com/8LpteC00aO
- Gladbach (@borussia_en) January 5, 2021
This app could exist for 1000 more years and I don’t think we’d top this picture of Germany international Christoph Kramer looking upon his complete collection of the original 151 Pokémon cards pic.twitter.com/tl6euY3HVg
- Phil Baki (@PhilTalksFooty) January 6, 2021
Christoph Kramer may be the only man in the world to own all 151 original Pokemon cards as well as a World Cup winners medal. You’ve got to applaud it, really.
He is living every kid’s dream.