Another month, another media feature for Paolo Panini, this time courtesy of the BBC!

Stephen Bunting is renowned for his prowess in darts, currently ranked 16th in the Professional Darts Championship's order of merit. However, beyond his darts career, Bunting has cultivated a significant online following, thanks to his engaging presence on social media platforms like TikTok and X. What many might not know is that a portion of his 290,000 followers shares his passion for a nostalgic hobby: collecting retro football stickers and cards.

Bunting's fascination with football stickers began in his childhood. Growing up, he was captivated by the excitement of collecting and filling sticker books, particularly those featuring his beloved Liverpool FC. The joy of unwrapping a new pack and discovering shiny stadium cards or favourite players' stickers left a lasting impression.

This passion was rekindled when Bunting discovered the 'Paolo Panini' TikTok channel, run by Ollie Jenks. Jenks' channel, which offers live streams of viewers purchasing and watching the opening of unopened packs from the 70s, 80s, 90s, and 2000s, immediately caught Bunting's interest. The nostalgia and excitement it brought back led to Bunting becoming a regular viewer and participant.

In Bunting's own words: "I was just scrolling through TikTok and came across Paolo's channel. It took me back to my childhood, and I got involved straight away." His interaction with Jenks has grown into a genuine friendship, with Bunting frequently joining the live streams and earning the affectionate title of 'the pack king' from the community.

For Jenks, the success of his channel has been a dream come true. What started as a podcast has transformed into a popular TikTok channel with 155,000 followers, allowing him to attend prestigious events like the Europa League final and collaborate with various football clubs. Jenks describes his channel as the "Antiques Roadshow of football," aiming to unearth football history through these vintage packs.

Bunting's rediscovered love for football stickers isn't just a hobby; it has become a way for him to connect with fans and share a piece of his personal life. He frequently showcases his collection on social media, which includes rare finds like a 1978 Panini World Cup sticker of Franz Beckenbauer and a unique signed card of Liverpool's Harvey Elliott.

Despite the significant investment in his collection, Bunting sees it as more than just a monetary venture. "It's about passing it down to my son and future generations," he explains. The thrill of discovering a legendary player in a pack and the camaraderie in the chat rooms during live streams add a unique layer to his engagement with this hobby.

For both Bunting and Jenks, the journey of collecting retro football stickers is filled with passion, nostalgia, and community. As Bunting continues to excel in his darts career, his hobby provides a meaningful way to unwind and connect with others who share his love for the beautiful game and its storied past.

For more insights into the world of retro football cards and the latest from Stephen Bunting quest for retro gold, visit and join the growing community of enthusiasts celebrating football's rich history, one pack at a time.

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