APBA Games today announced the release of the latest edition of one of the best bargain sets in tabletop-sports gaming: the European Champions Set.
For $25 plus shipping the 202 card set includes last year’s (2015-16) champions of the 7 top European soccer leagues, as well as the Champions League title-holders.
- Real Madrid (UEFA Champions League)
- Leicester City (Premier League – England)
- Bayern Munich (Bundesliga – Germany)
- Paris St. Germain (Ligue 1 – France)
- Juventus (Serie A – Italy)
- Barcelona (La Liga – Spain)
- Benfica (Primera Liga – Portugal)
- PSV Eindhoven (Eriedivisie – Netherlands)
I personally own the 2014-15 version of this set, which was a no-brainer purchase for me when I realized that it included Paris St. Germain (PSG) and one of my all-time favorite strikers, Zlatan Ibrahimovic. I’d wanted a card of his for some time, but since his country (Sweden) didn’t qualify for the 2014 World Cup (which is an out-of-print APBA Soccer set I do own), and since I didn’t want to buy the entire French Ligue 1 set for just PSG, I figured I was out of luck. The Euro Champions set was a terrific opportunity to grab his card and a few other cards I’d otherwise probably never own.
If, like me, you purchased the 2014-15 set, you’ll notice right away that there are two changes to the included league representatives in the version announced today. The Champions League champs Real Madrid and the Portuguese Primera Liga champs Benfica have replaced last year’s inclusions of Cruizero (Brazil Seria A) and Celtic (Scottish Premiere League). The new lineup makes more sense considering that Brazil isn’t in Europe and the Scottish Premiere League (forgive me, Scotsmen in the audience) isn’t a top-tier league on par with the others in the set.
The argument against the two year-over-year changes to the Euro Champions set is that now that the set doesn’t include Brazil and Scottish champions, it’s just a mini version of the Champions League set of 16 teams that APBA also offers for sale.
Indeed, if you wanted to play the full 16-team knockout round of the 2016-17 Champions League, the APBA Champions League Tournament set offers all 16 teams (354 cards) for $38 plus shipping. Seven of the eight clubs from the Euro Champions set are included (PSV Eindhoven is missing) in the Champions League set, as well as some other big-name clubs:
- Arsenal (English Premiere League)
- Atletico Madrid (La Liga)
- Monaco (Serie A)
- Bayer Leverkusen (Bundesliga)
- Dortmund (Bundesliga)
- Manchester City (English Premiere League)
- Porto (Portuguese Premier Liga)
- Sevilla (La Liga)
- Napoli (Serie A)