Real Madrid star striker Karim Benzema recently splurged on a $250,000 soccer ball encrusted with 72,000 white and black diamonds.
TMZ reported that the 27-year-old wanted a showpiece for his new home so he enlisted the skill and creativity of celebrity jewelers Dimitry Shimanov (a.k.a. Dave Bling) and Will Selby (a.k.a. Will Da Boss) of New York-based DWS Jewelry & Co.
What they whipped up for the French-born goal scorer was an official-size soccer ball set with diamonds weighing a total of 1,250 carats. Bling said the ball will be "a definite conversation starter when [Benzema's] company arrives."
The ball is covered in hexagonal panels of white and black diamonds, with individual stones weighing approximately .017 carats each. We're guessing that Benzema refined his love for bling during his short-lived relationship with "shine-bright-like-a-diamond" singer Rhianna.
Although Benzema's soccer ball is mighty impressive, it is by no means the most expensive soccer ball ever. That title goes to this truly amazing creation by South African jewelry house Shimansky.
As a tribute to the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which was held in South Africa, the jeweler designed a $2.59 million soccer ball adorned with 6,620 white diamonds and 2,640 black diamonds — weighing a total of 3,500 carats.
Shimansky produced a diamond-encrusted original and a number of replicas using crystals instead of diamonds. Those versions were displayed in Shimansky's stores and some were auctioned for charity.
Credits: Instagram/DaveBling; Karim Benzema by Chris Deahr, via Wikimedia Commons; Shimansky.com.