It is only back in 2006 that Under Armour began adding sports footwear to their range of products. Since then their reputation and market share has grown enormously across the world but how do they measure up when it comes to soccer equipment? We are going to find out with a look at the best Under Armour soccer cleats.
What To Think About When Choosing The Best Under Armour Soccer Cleats
When choosing a pair of soccer cleats, it’s all too easy to select them based on price, the style or even the color. If you do this you might save some time, but in the long run you could be spoiling your enjoyment when playing soccer, and even putting yourself at risk of injury.
If you’ve decided you want to wear a pair of Under Armour soccer cleats then that is fine, as they have a great reputation for quality sportswear, but there is more to consider in deciding the specific pair that will suit you when playing.
Before choosing the pair of Under Armour soccer cleats that are best for you, the following criteria need to be carefully evaluated.
What Position Do You In Play For Your Team?
Of all the criteria soccer players think about when choosing soccer cleats, this one is often overlooked. The fact exists that each position in a soccer team requires different skills and techniques. As a result of this, the footwear worn by players in each of those positions needs to have the characteristics to match
If we start up front and think about the forwards, their ability to turn quickly and away from defenders is vital, as is the power they can generate when shooting at goal. The soccer cleats that promote these skills will be lightweight and also have the biggest possible surface area at the front.
The tricky wingers who run up and down the side of the pitch rely a great deal on their speed, so lightweight soccer cleats are a must have. Soccer cleats which allow for accurate passing and crossing are also desirable.
In midfield is where the bulk of the game is often played and a player in these positions will do the bulk of the running throughout a game of soccer. To allow them to do this for the whole match these players need footwear which is comfortable and flexible.
Defenders and the goalkeeper know just one slip from them and they’ve cost their team a goal, so having the best possible grip underfoot is essential.
Let The Grip Suit The Surface
Although we mentioned above why grip is essential to defenders and goalkeepers, it is also important to other positions too. The grip underfoot and how effective it is can have a huge effect any soccer player’s performance. It may not even be the physical aspect, as often the confidence that your footing is assured can be the difference between playing well and not.
A sound footing is also important in the avoidance of injuries caused by pulled muscles, twisted ligaments and sprained ankles. It is not always a bad tackle that gets a player injured. Often it is the action of losing their footing, especially at the moment they are kicking the ball. As they do so, one or both feet losing grip means the body is suddenly moving unnaturally, leading to the injuries previously mentioned.
Soccer cleat manufacturers have helpfully created a system of two-letter codes which tells soccer players which surface each pair of soccer cleats is designed for. Here is the list:
- IN – Indoor: Indoor soccer courts
- AT – Artificial Turf: ‘Astroturf’
- SG – Soft Ground: Soft grass pitches
- AG – Artificial Ground: ‘Astrograss’
- FG – Firm Ground: Dry grass
- HG – Hard Ground: Dry, worn surfaces
Materials Used Differ Enormously
Modern soccer cleats are manufactured from many differing types of material, but the ones which influence the characteristics of the soccer cleats the most, are the upper materials.
The upper materials affect touch, feel, ball control, power, protection, the weight of the shoe and ultimately the price of the soccer cleats. There are natural materials, synthetic materials and hybrids plus manufacturers, including Under Armour, all have their own, bespoke or branded upper materials. Here are some of the most popular materials used:
Full-Grain Leather Uppers: This material is very comfortable and gives a soccer player’s feet the most protection. Leather is also very durable. The pricing of leather soccer cleats can vary greatly based on the grade and the suppleness of the leather.
Kangaroo Leather Uppers: K-leather, as it called, is a thin and very soft material so it gives players excellent touch and feel for the ball. Protection is not as good as full grain leather
Synthetic Uppers: Widely used material which is durable and comfortable. Less supple than some leathers but can still provide stability when worn
Synthetic Leather Uppers: Most manufacturers have their branded versions of this hybrid material which aims to combine the best qualities of both leather and synthetic materials.
Recommended Under Armour Soccer Cleats
There are a few products that you can tell are going to be a bit special just by looking at and holding them. Under Armour Men’s UA Speedform CRM Leather FG Soccer Cleats is one of them. Their all white leather upper not only looks classy but when you feel it with your hands you just know it’s going to be good.
These soccer cleats are branded with Under Armour’s ‘Speedform’ range which has its emphasis on speed and comfort. This is achieved by creating an upper made from soft calfskin to provide a very lightweight soccer cleat that literally wraps around your foot. The benefit of this, especially with leather, is it gives players the optimum touch when controlling the soccer ball.
The heel section is reinforced to give the best possible protection in this area and also provide a secure fit around the heel. The padding around the rim is lightweight but comfortable and with the lining being breathable the issue of excess sweating and overheating feet should not arise. To add to the comfort package, the insole is made from foam which molds to your foot to give cushioning and stability.
Traction underfoot is designed for optimum grip on firm ground. This grip is provided by the cleat configuration which consists of several different shaped cleats in the forefoot and blades in the heel area.
Our next candidate for the best Under Armour soccer cleats is Under Armour Men’s UA CF Force 2.0 FG Soccer Cleats. Their profile is one that looks like a very traditional shaped soccer shoe but there’s plenty of modern features to admire in these soccer cleats.
The uppers are made from a lightweight synthetic material which has unique 3D rubberized texturing across the entire surface. This texture should enhance ball control and provide the best possible contact with the ball when passing or shooting.
These soccer cleats are branded as ‘Clutchfit’ by Under Armour with the intention that they should surround the foot as snuggly as possible, almost like a sock. The sock liner is die-cut with extra cushioning underfoot in the insole so from the first whistle to the last any soccer player wearing these cleats should have no issues with feeling uncomfortable.
The sole is made from TPU to provide the flexibility required for quick turns. Also forming the sole is the stud configuration which consists of bladed cleats in the heel and conical studs in the front section. This is set-up is ideal for playing on firm, grassy surfaces and should provide the traction required when stopping suddenly or when you are looking for quick acceleration.
Color options include the traditional black with white and red trim and the others available include green, royal blue, and three variations of hi-vis yellow.
There was certainly no chance we would miss seeing our next contenders, the Under Armour Blur II Challenge soccer cleats. With a very bright luminous yellow color covering 95% of the surface anyone wearing these won’t struggle to get noticed on the soccer field.
These soccer cleats are constructed using a lightweight synthetic material which promotes speeds and mobility whilst playing. The texturing is very subtle and not as pronounced as some other soccer cleats. Nevertheless, it should still provide a level of ball control for most soccer players.
Comfort is always at a premium when it comes to soccer cleats and Under Armour have addressed this with a die cut foam insole. This cushioning is designed to disperse any pressure coming from underneath the shoe when landing for example. The padding around the rim of the inner shoe is well cushioned too, adding to the protection.
Those seeking a pair of soccer cleats that provide maximum agility will be pleased to know the outer sole is made from TPU which provides the flexibility required. For the studs, Under Armour has decided to use triangular cleats across the front sole and bladed cleats in the heel section. The advantage of using triangle shaped cleats is they provide grip in all directions if you are twisting or turning.
One additional, and relatively unique feature, is the addition of anti-bacterial treatment within the inner shoe which is intended to reduce odors.
The next soccer footwear we are going to look at is the Men’s Under Armour Speed Force FG Soccer Cleats. They are styled in a very distinguished turquoise and hi-vis yellow coloring and have a very sleek profile, so if the look of your soccer footwear is important then these might do the trick.
A one-piece synthetic material has been used to create the upper which provides a very supportive body of the shoe. The surface has 3D patternization to create a textured profile which aims to enhance ball control. The lightweight nature of the synthetic upper seeks to promote speed and agility which should delight wingers and strikers.
The inner shoe consists of a die cut sock liner which has extra cushioning in both the insole and around the rim. The insole provides protection from any pressure transferring from the studs underneath through to the player’s feet.
The outer sole is made from TPU to provide both stability and flexibility, both essentials for any soccer player. This will enhance the ability to turn, twist and also stop quickly throughout the game.
Traction underfoot is further assured by the cleats configuration which consists of bladed cleats in the heel section and conical studs in the forefoot section. The surfaces most suited for these soccer cleats are firm grass soccer pitches.
If you are someone who likes their sports gear to look sleek and cool, then the Under Armour Men’s Blur Challenge II FG Soccer Cleats might be the answer. They come in a very smooth and shiny black color with blue and luminous yellow trim which gives them a truly unique appearance. But as we’ve said before looks don’t make the product, performance does, so let’s put them to the test.
You won’t be surprised to learn, given the shiny finish, that the uppers are made from synthetic materials. This keeps these soccer cleats lightweight to aid swift movement and speed. The upper is also breathable which reduces the chances of your feet overheating due to excess sweat whilst playing
Under Armour ensure your comfort is taken care of by utilizing a die cut inner which surrounds your foot like a sock. This reduces movement of the soccer cleats during play, which is a primary cause of discomfort and blisters caused by rubbing. The cushioned insole also prevents pressure from the studs and cleats underneath from causing any discomfort to the sole of your foot
Your underfoot stability and traction are provided by the triangular studs on the forefoot and bladed cleats in the heel section. These are ideal for maximum grip when playing on firm grass soccer pitches.
In our quest to find the best Under Armour soccer cleats we need to pick a winner and in our opinion the Under Armour Men’s UA Speedform CRM Leather FG Soccer Cleats are the best choice.
These soccer cleats offer an excellent combination of ball touch thanks to their calfskin leather upper and a high degree of comfort and protection with a cushioned insole and breathable inner sock. The ‘Speedform’ construction literally wraps this soccer shoe around your foot so your pace and stability are optimized.
Designed for speed, which every player should be looking for, their lightweight construction offers this in abundance.
Flexibility and traction on firm ground are assured with the unique blade and cleat construction underfoot. This configuration also aids quick acceleration to add even more to the speed package.
The Under Armour Men’s UA Speedform CRM Leather FG Soccer Cleats are definitely a class act and worthy of our #1 recommendation.