The Argentine Football Association (AFA) governing body has confirmed that Socios will continue as an exclusive provider of its official fan token after settling a legal dispute with the blockchain-based fan engagement platform.

Through an extended agreement, Socios will operate the $ARG Fan Token until at least 2026.

Earlier this year, Socios sued the AFA for unilaterally terminating their sponsorship contract, agreed in July 2020, and entered into a similar agreement with rival Binance.

Socios filed a complaint with an Argentinian national commercial court, which then issued an injunction to the AFA ordering it to recognize its contracts agreed with the firm.

The legal action followed the AFA’s deal with Binance in January in which the cryptocurrency firm had been named as the global main sponsor of the Argentinian national soccer team, the official fan token provider of the AFA, and the naming sponsor of the country’s professional soccer league.

The top-flight league was called the Torneo during the 2021-22 season.

Shortly after the Binance deal was made public, Socios released a statement expressing its “absolute outrage” at the news that the governing body would allocate a rival firm rights that Socios believed it had tied up exclusively.

This included branding rights on the training kit of the national team and rights to operate the AFA’s official fan token.

The AFA’s subsequent agreement with Binance is currently set to last for a five-year period in a deal understood to be worth $40 million covering those rights.

The Socios deal, which was worth significantly less, was meant to run for three years, but the AFA reportedly canceled its contracts with the firm in early January due variously to alleged defaulted payments, failure to sufficiently promote the $ARG token that was trading well down as a result, and breaches in the use of the images of the national team and professional league.

With the legal battle now settled, Binance will retain the national team and league branding rights, while Socios keeps the fan token element through an expanded deal.

As a strategic partner of the AFA, Socios will collaborate with the federation to “accelerate its mission to build a gamified, Web3 ready, engagement and rewards community for Argentina fans all over the world through $ARG fan tokens.”

The two parties will work together to create reward and engagement opportunities linked to this year’s FIFA World Cup, the Copa América in 2024, and the World Cup in 2026.

Fan rewards through the tokens will include VIP experiences, merchandise, discounts, and other exclusive offers and benefits. Token holders can also access digital rewards, including NFTs.

Through the Socios app, Argentina fans can additionally vote in polls and access a range of features including games, check-ins, competitions, predictors, and augmented reality token hunts.

Notably, Argentina star Lionel Messi serves as a global ambassador for Socios.

Alexandre Dreyfus, chief executive of Socios and its parent company Chiliz, said: “AFA’s commitment to the continuation of our agreement aimed at further expanding our fan token partnership is great news for Argentina fans.

“As strategic partners, we’ll work continuously with AFA to create new ways for fans to engage and be rewarded through $ARG Fan Tokens. We’re excited by all the possibilities on the horizon, starting with this year’s FIFA World Cup, and look forward to building a vibrant, connected community for all Argentina fans on”

Claudio Tapia, president of AFA, added: “We are very pleased to announce the continuity and extension of our commercial agreement with It is important for our association to continue generating digital income, as in this case the $ARG Fan Tokens, which also allow us to be close to the fans of the national team around the world.

“In this important year for AFA, we want to strengthen all our projects and increase the presence of our brand in all markets. Through this agreement, we can work and grow in these aspects together with”

In May, the AFA agreed a digital collectibles partnership with OneFootball, the international soccer content portal, while a similar agreement with blockchain-based fantasy engagement platform Sorare was secured in July.