In the world of soccer, there can be few other brands that have such a significant alignment with the sport than Adidas. Both today and for decades in the past any soccer match, amateur or professional, will have had the famous three stripes somewhere in view, whether on the kit, the ball or the footwear.
Adidas's reputation for producing quality soccer cleats is extremely high and as they offer such a wide range, deciding on a pair can be difficult. So to help you pick the best Adidas soccer cleats we are going to take a look at five of their top products.
What You Must Consider When Choosing The Best Adidas Soccer Cleats
Many people choose a pair of soccer cleats using the most basic of criteria. For some, it is purely the price, others the styling, and colors, and a fair number just grab the first pair they see. Picking a pair of soccer cleats using any of these methods is a bit of a lottery and certainly not the way to improve your enjoyment of playing soccer.
Picking the best Adidas soccer cleats means you have decided first of all, this is the brand you want. Whether that is because of their reputation, your past experience or your belief in the quality they produce is all fine, but there is still more to think about to get the right pair for you.
Here are some criteria that need to be considered:
What Materials Have Been Used to Manufacture the Footwear?
The days of thick leather soccer boots are consigned to the history books. Nostalgia is all good and well, but it won't help you become a better soccer player. Modern manufacturing of soccer cleats utilizes a number of different materials, with the most important being the one used for the uppers.
The reason this is so important is because this is what contacts with the ball when you kick it. The upper materials will also have differing influences on your comfort, agility, speed and the protection for your foot so picking the right one is crucial. Here are the most common:
Full-Grain Leather Uppers: These are very durable, comfortable and offer the most protection for your foot. They come in a large range of prices depending on the grade of leather and how supple it is.
Kangaroo Leather Uppers: Known as 'K-Leather', this is very soft and its thinness offers greater touch on the ball. The downside of that is less foot protection.
Synthetic Uppers: Very popular material due to its durability. Comfortable and waterproof but not as supple as leather uppers so often synthetic soccer cleats need 'breaking in'.
Synthetic Leather Uppers: Trying to find their own perfect combination of both synthetic and leather is something the big manufacturers all attempt, including Adidas. This combination upper is durable but also soft enough to help ball control.
Where Do You Play in Your Team?
It is incredible to see some teams sponsored by a manufacturer and all the players wearing the exact same soccer cleats. It's an issue because each position requires different skills and different physical attributes.
Goalkeepers and defenders, for example, will need to be confident of their footing, so the grip their soccer cleats provide needs to be spot on. These positions will also benefit from soccer cleats with the maximum kicking surface, for clearing the ball, and enhanced protection for all the robust challenging they undertake.
Midfielders, are the beating heart of the team and cover more blades of grass than other players. For this increased level of running, comfort must the number one priority, closely followed by good touch on the ball.
Wingers rely on their pace and nimbleness so a lightweight soccer cleat is ideal for them.
Finally, we have the forward whose job it is to score goals. To aid them in this task, they want soccer cleats that help them with their agility, so they need to be lightweight and flexible. A large kicking surface for shooting is also desirable for forwards.
The Grip Needs to Suit the Surface
All soccer players need to be able to stay on their feet for several reasons. First is the fact that a slip at the crucial moment can spell disaster at both ends of the field. The forward about to shoot with their right foot doesn't want their left foot sliding away from them as they do so. Likewise, a defender is going to look silly if he slips and lets the other team's striker through to score a goal.
It would be easy if all soccer matches were played on the exact same surface, but we all know that's not the case. There's hard surfaces, dry grass, soft ground, and variations of artificial grass all in the mix. For all of these surfaces types, there are specific cleats and stud combinations best suited to each one and they are all identified by a two-letter code. The best advice is to pick one that closest matches the sort of surface you normally play on.
Here are the details:
HG - Hard Ground: Dry and worn surface
FG - Firm Ground: Dry grass with little moisture
AG - Artificial Ground: Used on 'Astrograss'
SG - Soft Ground: Softer grass pitches
AT - Turf: Used on 'Astroturf'
IN - Indoor: For indoor soccer courts
Recommended Adidas Soccer Cleats
A very traditional piece of soccer footwear is the subject of our next review with the Adidas Men's Gloro FG Soccer Cleats. When we say traditional, we don't mean just how they look in terms of black body and white trim, but also in the fact that its upper is made from leather.
The leather in question is Kangaroo Leather or as it's more commonly called, 'K-Leather'. K-Leather forms the front of these soccer cleats and provides a soft surface to maximize ball control as it arrives at your foot. The suppleness of K-Leather also gives the wearer a snugger and more secure fit over their toes due it's flexible properties.
Synthetic leather has been used to form the rear and sides of the upper giving a greater degree of stability than softer leather might. Ball control in these areas has been thought about with texturing covering the entire surface. By doing this Adidas have sought to offer an excellent combination of leather and synthetic to give the benefits of both types of material where they are needed most.
The inner shoe consists of Adidas's 'Comfort Frame' which incorporates a cushioned rim and EVA insole. A prominent feature of this area is the elasticated strap tongue first introduced by Adidas back in 2002. It has become very popular with both amateur and professional players as it enlarges and improves the striking area, and on a practical level keeps the laces tucked away.
Grip from the Adidas Men's Gloro FG Soccer Cleat is achieved with the rubber sole and triangular cleats. They are specifically designed for use on firm ground.
In our quest to find the best Adidas soccer cleats takes a look at what seems like the quintessential piece of soccer footwear. The Adidas Performance Men's Gloro 16.1 FG Soccer Shoe looks like a throwback to the 1970s and the days of Franz Beckenbauer and Johan Cruyff.
Whilst the look may be traditional, a lot of modern technology has been applied to these soccer cleats. The front and toe section of the upper is made from premium K-leather. K-leather is a favorite amongst soccer players due to its suppleness and the enhanced feel for the ball it provides. The rear half of the shoe, including the heel, is made from synthetic leather which gives stability whilst retaining some of the softness that the toe section has for better touch and control on the instep.
To ensure comfort the insole is made from cushioned EVA to prevent excess pressure on the sole of your foot from the studs underneath. Speaking of underneath, the grip is provided by the rubber soul with traditional rounded studs which are suitable for playing on both natural grass and artificial surfaces.
Comfort is further ensured and protection provided by the large cushioned tongue and padded inner rim.
The Adidas Performance Men's Ace 16.2 Primemesh FG/AG Soccer Shoe is the next product we are to look at, and on the first view, it certainly does look distinctive.
This is due, in no small measure, to the 'Techfit' collar which protrudes from the top of the shoe. The advantage of having this sort of lining is it makes the soccer cleats fit snuggly, almost like a pair of socks. This reduces any movement of the shoe when you are running for example, making more efficient use of your energy.
The uppers on the Adidas Performance Men's Ace 16.2 Primemesh FG/AG Soccer Shoe are made from synthetic material which Adidas have called 'Primemesh'. It is designed with a very intricate texture which covers the entire surface of the shoe, although it is more prominent in the front toes section than it is on the sides and rear. The purpose of this design is to give the player better ball control and touch.
To give players even greater control the lace holes have a special covering to offer a greater 'strike zone' when kicking the ball with the front part of your foot.
Underfoot, traction is provided by the rubber sole and Adidas' 'TotalControl' rounded stud alignment which is ideal for playing on both firm grass surfaces and artificial grass.
Having spoken about tradition in some other reviews the one term which doesn't describe the Adidas Performance Men's X 15.4 Soccer Shoes is that they are old-fashioned. The styling is colored with bright and fluorescent oranges, greens, pinks or yellows and if you are looking for black, then the only place you’ll see it is underneath on the sole.
Keeping with the modern theme you won't be surprised to learn that the upper is made entirely from synthetic material, which Adidas have branded as 'Bravo'. There is very little stitching so the added ball control is reliant on the supple texturing which literally covers the entire surface of the upper, the sides and the heel section. The other advantage of using synthetic uppers is it provides stability and long lasting durability.
The lining is simple and effective with thin padding around the rim, but it must be noted that the tongue has no cushioning which many players prefer for protection and better striking of the ball. The upside of no cushioning is this part of your foot has closer contact with the ball so your touch should be improved.
Underfoot traction comes courtesy of rubber soles which are more flexible than synthetic soles tend to be. This improves agility especially when turning away from opponents. The studs are triangular with four on the heel and up front a four - one - three alignment which is perfect for firm ground, hard surfaces, and artificial soccer pitches.
If you like anything you buy to look ultra-modern, then you must check out the Adidas Performance Men's X 16.2 FG Soccer Shoes. They come styled in a very futuristic-looking metallic silver color and the texturing on the upper is unique, to say the least.
The upper is synthetic so you know it will be durable and on these soccer cleats, Adidas have used their 'Techfit' upper which is designed to perfectly mold itself to the shape of your foot. The obvious advantage of this is the comfort but in terms of playing it should also an additional degree of feel for the ball when it arrives at your feet.
We mentioned the texturing being unique and it is indeed like nothing else we've seen. It appears almost as though the indentations have been chiseled out from the upper to look more like grooves. They are long, deep, and look spear shaped with the effect that control of the ball is from the cushioning between these grooves rather than the sort of micro-texturing that many soccer cleats utilize.
You should experience a snug fit when wearing these soccer cleats due to the upper being one-piece. This adds to your ability to makes fast turns and twists with your soccer shoes staying closely wrapped around your feet.
On the subject of fast twists and turns, you'll be aware that these are only possible if you having proper grip underneath you, and this is ably provided by the synthetic sole and cleats underfoot. The cleats are specifically designed for firm ground and in particular dry, natural grass.
To pick the best Adidas soccer cleats is like asking which 'Ferrari model is the best car?' You'd be happy with any of them...wouldn't you?
In the case of the five Adidas soccer cleats reviewed to say one is the winner implies the other weren't up to scratch but in truth, all of them would make a great pair of soccer cleats for any soccer player. But as in the FIFA World Cup, there can be only one winner and it is the Adidas Men's Gloro FG Soccer Cleats.
The kangaroo leather uppers on these soccer cleats provide a wonderfully soft surface that simply caresses the ball when you control it. The 'K-Leather' also provides a fantastically snug fit with a flexibility that makes turning and running so much easier.
With the added combination of synthetic leather being used for the rear of the Adidas Men's Gloro FG Soccer Cleats, we have the best of both worlds in terms of suppleness and stability.
These soccer cleats are also extremely comfortable due to the EVA insole and cushioned rim, with grip guaranteed by the rubber soled triangular cleats.
Not to be forgotten is the finishing touch provided by the elasticated strap tongue, which improves the kicking strike area and to no small degree the overall appearance of these very desirable soccer cleats.