10 Best Soccer Cleats Reviewed

Soccer is a combination of aerobic motions that combine running, jumping, and remaining in control of the ball. It’s also a good calorie burner; the running alone is a considerable amount of exercise at the right intensity. However, just like in running, there are certain things you should (and shouldn’t) wear for it.

Best-Soccer-Cleats-Player-about-to-score-a-goalon-goalie

There’s not much equipment behind soccer, especially if you’re a field player. All you can really justify wearing is a pair of cleats and a pair of shin covers. Just like in any other discipline, optimal equipment is required to reach the peak performance. You can play soccer without shin covers, although that may lead to injuries, but it’s possible. Playing field soccer without cleats though, not so much.

Last Updated: June 4, 2017
by Sergio Bettiol :

The recent update reflects incorporates 2017’s best soccer cleats, with improved research criteria and newer guidance on how to buy them. Also included are some of the most frequently asked questions about football and soccer cleats.

Nike Mercurial Superfly V FG
  • Nike Mercurial Superfly V FG
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Ultralight Nike 3D Speed Plate
  • Price: See Here
Nike Hypervenom Phantom III
  • Nike Hypervenom Phantom III
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Hyperreactive Texture
  • Price: See Here
Adidas Ace 16.4 FXG
  • Adidas Ace 16.4 FXG
  • 4.4 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Chaos Outsole
  • Price: See Here

Good soccer cleats alone won’t make anyone a decent player. Cheap soccer cleats, on the other hand, will ensure low performance. Soccer is a sport where a wide variety of physical factors will determine the outcome of the performance. How fast you can run, how high you can jump, how big you are, and how much you weigh. These are some of the most important factors on the field.

However, nothing beats skill. While cleats don’t determine the quality of your skills, they do have a considerable impact on your physical and dribbling abilities. But like we said previously, the impact is much bigger when it’s negative.

 

10 Best Soccer Cleats

 

1. Nike Mercurial Superfly V FG

The Superfly V is the right footwear for any striker. The combination of elements in this firm ground shoe help your reach explosive speed and deliver the best of your skills. A special external design makes ball handling smoother and easier than ever, even when running at top speed. Nike’s speed plate naturally resembles your foot; allowing you to reach your maximum running potential.
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Ultralight Nike 3D Speed Plate
The latest Mercurial models have been equipped with Nike’s top technology. A tridimensional shoe plate lets players enhance their speed administration while keeping control of the ball. Its ultra-light materials increase functionality without adding bulk and keeping a minimalist build.

All Conditions Control (ACC)
ACC technology enhances the quality of the contact between the cleats and the ball like never before. As you can guess by the name, this technology is reliable in both wet and dry conditions.

Cost
This pair is by far the most expensive shoe on this list. The Superfly V are arguably the best performance soccer cleats out there, used by world-class players. Technology in combination with premium fabrics compose a hefty price tag
Pros

Great touch

Flyknit Technology

Vapor traction cleat system

Carbon-fiber plate

Cons

Considerably expensive

Sock material isn’t too durable

2. Puma evoTOUCH 2 FG

PUMA’s second edition of the evoTOUCH model comes back again as a leather firm ground cleat. The materials of this build make not only make it lighter but also more sensitive to ball touch. Technology and design come together to deliver maximum grip and responsiveness on the field. Thanks to the superbly flexible build, the evoTOUCH 2 allows your feet to react quickly.
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Insole grip
GripTex technology is applied on both the insole and the heel to secure a steady internal grip. A natural fit in combination with GripTex equipment reduce internal slipping and generate enough comfort.

Speedtrack
The responsive speedtrack design takes torsion and reactivity to their limits on firm ground soccer fields. This design allows the shoe build to access a comfortable flex in any direction, at any speed. Speedtrack supports the flex of your motions from the ankle to the tip of the toes.

Cost
The evoTOUCH 2 deliver efficiency at a fair price. The cost is average; not cheap but not too expensive either in comparison to the rest of the list. Still, might be something not everyone can afford.
Pros

Superb flexibility

Reliable comfort

Optimized torsion and reaction

No internal slipping

Cons

Runs long in comparison to the EvoSPEED

Needs to be broken in

3. Nike Hypervenom Phantom III

Nike’s Hypervenom Phantom III resembles the aggressive design of the Superfly V. This pair delivers all the qualities you should look for on a striker shoe. This pair of cleats is designed for firm-ground fields, optimizing shot speed and ball control on low grass. The skin-like wear counts with high breathability, comfort, support, and stretching. ACC technology works in combination with a special plate to break the limits of forward players’ performance.
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Quick Response
Nike’s Hyperreactive Plate makes the forefoot extremely flexible which allows a responsive, stable base to support each gait. The quick reaction design helps you smoothly turn, cut, and twist in any direction without any difficulty.

Optimized shooting
The Hyperreactive Texture is specifically designed to improve contact between the cleats’ surface and the ball. This enhances traction, generating superior striking power and adding more pronounced curves to every strike.

Cost
The Hypervenom III is the second most expensive items on the list. It’s comparable to the Superfly V in both cost and performance, and is highly endorsed by world soccer superstars. Utterly expensive, but utterly efficient.
Pros

Dynamic fit collar

Synthetic build

Lightweight power

ACC technology

Cons

Pretty expensive cleats

4. Adidas Gloro 16.1

4. Adidas Gloro 16.1
The firm-ground game is the specialty of the Gloro 16.1. Made to endure every possible circumstance that might present in 90 minutes of intensity. A stable outsole build allows users to reach explosive power while running on dry or wet fields. An EVA insole prevents heel bruises and reduces both impact and stress, keeping your feet comfortable during the game. The K-leather upper build is not only fashionable but also breathable and very comfortable.
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EVA Insole
The Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) insole regulates shock-absorption around the whole foot. It counts with heel cushioning for greater comfort. This insole is also responsible for preventing internal slipping and providing a tight fit.

Firm-ground outsole
The Gloro 16.1 counts with a specialized outsole for firm-ground performance. These cleats supply quality traction with any firm-ground field. It also reduces the impact caused by the firm surfaces and features a very light, yet efficient design.

Cost
The combination of cost and performance make this shoe a favorite amongst many soccer players. It’s very hard to beat such a good performance to cost ratio. Definitely worth the investment.
Pros

Comfortable

Suitable for those with wide feet

Provides good support

Room for a brace or socks

Cons

Requires a break-in time for a good fit

5. Puma evoPOWER 1.3 FG

5. Puma evoPOWER 1.3 FG
PUMA’s evoPOWER 1.3 counts with incredible accuracy. Following the principles of barefoot kicking, the evoPOWER resemble the anatomy of the feet and support a natural biomechanical kicking motion. Forget about unintentional spin, accuracy and stability in these cleats allow definite passes and kicks. The design of these shoes not only improve your kicking foot but your stability foot as well. As a result, you obtain both power and longitudinal flexibility from upper to the outsole.
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Flexible frame
A Pebax® outsole offers a natural flex for jumping, running, and twisting. The Gradual Stability Frame reduces bulk and weight while adding support and flexibility to the whole shoe.

Barefoot power
Adap-Lite upper technology delivers an anatomical stretch, allowing the upper build to flex comfortably. This combination delivers not only more power, but also a greater touch resembling barefoot performance.

Cost
PUMA’s evoPOWER 1.3 is above the average tag of this list, and can be considered expensive. Though, the quality of this pair stands up to every cent in the price tag.
Pros

Accurate barefoot kicking

Flexible frame and outsole

GripTex technology print

Stable conical studs

Cons

Lack of arch support

Runs wide

6. Adidas Copa Mundial

6. Adidas Copa Mundial
The Copa Mundial model features an upper leather build for greater comfort and ball feel. The fit and finesse build enhance control. With a double-density outsole, the Copa Mundial offers a long-lasting performance on the firm field. The combination of an EVA insole and synthetic lining provide an extra dose of comfort and adequate fit. This model performs specifically on firm-ground, in both wet and dry circumstances.
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Dual Density Outsole
The outsole counts with twice as much the normal density. Thanks to this, durability is considerably extended. This feature allows players to get a greater grasp of the field and a much more stable platform.

Die-cut EVA Insole
The EVA insole is a specialist of shock absorption. Keeping comfort and protection at top, this insole prevents both internal slipping and impact damage. This material is also resistant to sweat and bad odors.

Cost
Could be considered a costly shoe. While it might not be affordable for everyone, you won’t lack any aspect of soccer performance while wearing this pair. Cost is considerably above average.
Pros
  • Lightweight
  • No impact damage
  • Double density outsole
  • Leather upper
Cons
  • A bit tight on the toes for wide feet

7. Puma evoSPEED SL 1.4 FG

7. Puma evoSPEED SL 1.4 FG
The evoSPEED SL series are specialists when it comes the ultra-lightweight performance. The upper leather finish is very fashionable, but it doesn’t stop there. A thin layer of K-leather makes this shoe utterly comfortable and light. As for the rest of the cleat, the 1.4 version features an optimal frame and a flexible build. The combination of technologies on this design makes this pair one of the best of the series.
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Unmatched frame
The SPEEDFRAME structure delivers high levels of flexibility and responsiveness to provide smoother and more powerful motions. This feature was built especially to reach maximum running power in firm ground soccer fields.

Ultra-soft upper
The K-leather upper is superbly sensitive and light. This allows players to have a greater touch of the ball and thus better control of it. The synthetic materials are also easy to wash.

Cost
Near average cost, making every cent worth the purchase. PUMA products are things anyone rarely regrets buying, and their evoSPEED SL 1.4 are no exception. Quality at its best, for an average price.
Pros
  • Superior comfort
  • Resembles anatomic shape of feet
  • K-leather upper
  • Great flexibility
Cons
  • The light build is not as durable as other cleats
  • Run half a size small

8. Nike Tiempo Legend VI

8. Nike Tiempo Legend VI
The Tiempo Legend VI stays true to its name. These cleats suit any position on the field, as their design and technologies make them suitable for them all. The Tempo VI is secure, firm, and non-slipping thanks to the solid outsole specialized on firm-ground. The ultra-comfortable upper is built with light kangaroo leather for a sensitive control of the ball and kicking optimization.
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Superb sense
The combination of All Conditions Control (ACC) technology and a kangaroo leather upper makes up for enhanced sensitivity. Thanks to this combination, the ball is much easier to handle and dribble; even on wet fields and while running.

Superior Grip
The flexible outsole not only supports the natural running motion, but it also provides enhanced traction in all circumstances. The plate provides a firm base for stability, and conical cleats allow better underfoot ball control.

Cost
The Tiempo Leyend VI is quite expensive. Though not close to the Superfly V, the price tag is unquestionable hefty. Yet, you can’t expect less from a shoe that delivers this much power.
Pros
  • Kangaroo leather upper build
  • Conical cleats
  • Durable materials
  • All Conditions Control (ACC)
Cons
  • Expensive
  • Not enough arch support

9. Under Armour Spotlight FG

9. Under Armour Spotlight FG
The Spotlight covers all necessary aspects of a soccer cleat. Strike with precision, control with agility, and run limitlessly with this pair. Under Armour’s Spotlight is excellent when it comes to comfort and fit, securing both the ankles and the inner fit. Running multidirectional flexibility reaches its peak in this model, allowing sudden twisting and changes of direction. The combination of soccer technology a strategic design makes this shoe a great soccer performer.
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Forefoot flexibility
V56 technology is located in the forefoot and specifically engineered to allow the shoe to help limit toe hyperextension. At the same time, it provides the right amount of multi-direction flex needed to run naturally.

Adaptive construction
An innovative SpeedForm frame adapts to the anatomical shape of your feet providing unique comfort. The personalized fit works as a much steadier support while running, crossing, and stopping.

Cost
Excellent cleat for its price. Durable elements will make sure your inversion is long-lasting, as they can endure thorough games of full intensity. The price is average, and fair in relation to its performance.
Pros
  • Very flexible frame and plate
  • Ankle and heel support
  • Precise grip on the ball
  • Superb comfort
Cons
  • Runs tight on toes and heels
  • The cleats are plastic
  • Takes a bit to break in

10. Adidas Ace 16.4 FXG

10. Adidas Ace 16.4 FXG
The Ace 16.4 is meant for firm-ground aggressive players. The tactical construction is made for constant action, with a combination of elements that skyrocket performance. A compressed upper allows quick slip-on wear that is almost instant. The shoe is equipped with a quality outsole that escalates your running ability, maximizing power on each gait. Thanks to the lightweight approach, you’ll barely feel you’ve got any shoes.
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Compressed upper
TechFit technology is a fusion of comfort, secure fit, and slip-on design for a zero time wear. Thanks to compressing materials, the ankles receive the support they need for a steady fit throughout the entire games.

Chaos Outsole
Staying true to its name, this outsole unleashes chaos on the field. The firm-ground approach maintains stability and mobility smooth, allowing you to run and perform without any obstacles. Wet fields don't obstruct the chaos outsole.

Cost
This is unquestionably the best value of our list. The Ace 16.4 X counts with a great variety of functional technologies and features. Not so popular due to newer versions, but still a great performer and unbeatable price.
Pros
  • Low price
  • Comfortable build
  • Durable frame
Cons
  • Tight
  • Hard to break in

Each type of field requires shoes that are specifically designed for it. On this list, we focused on shoes that deliver firm-ground functionalities. Lacking features such as flexibility or ball grip can turn out to be expensive performance-wise. We’re not telling you that you need the top tier and most expensive cleats on the market. We’re just telling you to keep in mind that the cost is often related to performance. Professional shoes are indeed costly; there are no professional cleats that are cheap.

Your performance will vary depending on the quality of your shoes. While shoes alone won’t score the goals for you, they do have an impact on your ability to make them. If any shoe worked for firm ground soccer, nobody would buy expensive cleats. Unlike other sports, soccer cleats are pretty much all the equipment you need as a field player. If you get that one thing wrong, you can’t expect to reach your optimal performance.

Quality draws a huge line between professional soccer cleats and cheap, low-quality ones. The difference is visible when running, striking, dribbling, and gripping the ball. It may seem like all cleats are the same, but the reality is far from that. Every single element in a pro cleat serves a very functional purpose. From the upper textures meant to improve ball spin and control to the power outsole meant to enhance speed. These features are usually not present in a generic cleat, as they’re just meant to grip and strike.

There’s also a noticeable difference in the selection of fabrics. Great cleats apply minimalist materials to develop a soft touch, almost feeling like there’s no shoe. They’re much more comfortable, breathable, and flexible than a regular build. Cleats alone don’t make a soccer player, but they can improve your game as much as they can reduce it.

 

Criteria for Evaluation

Flexibility

The flexibility is a must of almost every sports shoe, especially when running is involved. It’s simply impossible to perform 90 minutes of soccer with a stiff, straight shoe that doesn’t bend. The natural motion of running involves the forefoot flexing. Thus this is where soccer players need flexibility the most. When running, we obtain the impulse from the forefoot flex and reduce shock with the heel. If there’s no flexibility present, the running motion would be obstructed.

However, there’s much more behind a shoe’s flexibility than just the running motions. In soccer, flexibility plays a role in dribbling, striking, and maneuvering in general. While the kicking shoe might not need to be flexible at the time of striking, the support foot does. Before striking the ball, the body assumes an inclined position that relies on the support leg.   If the shoe doesn’t flex properly, it’s much harder to assume the kicking position.

Related factors: Torsion, Materials, Outsole

Torsion: The torsion ability of a shoe ultimately relies on the ankle support. Torsion is an aspect of flexibility that allows you to rotate instead of flex. This is necessary when soccer players want to change direction while running at high speed. Their ability to turn around or change directions will rely on the ankle support and flexibility of the upper build.

Materials: Fabrics have a big role in the flexibility of a soccer cleat. Stiff, hard materials won’t allow the shoe build to flex along with the foot in the running motion. The materials of the upper build should consist of thin, flexible materials. Bulky fabrics don’t have good flexibility; they’ll often dislocate the frame when trying to bend.

Outsole: An outsole can optimize flexibility just as much as it can obstacle it. A flexible upper build alone can’t develop sufficient flexibility, but in combination with a flexible outsole, results are maximized. The materials of the outsole play a role in flexibility, but the design itself becomes an element as well.

 

Weight

Sports shoes for all disciplines have quickly embraced weightless designs. This is due to the reduced effort required from athletes to perform motions. Soccer is no less. It’s not only easier for players to run with light shoes, but also easier to control the ball. By incorporating lighter, thinner materials to the build, players have access to superior ball sensitiveness. This has a huge impact when it comes to running while in control of the ball.

Bulky shoes, on the other hand, require greater effort to move around. This effort perhaps won’t make fatigue the athlete, but it’s reflected in their performance. Their motor skills aren’t necessarily adapted to heavy cleats. Thus they might become an obstacle. Soccer cleats with a minimalist approach offer a barefoot experience; this way athletes are not distracted or dragged.

Related factors: Materials

Materials: The materials are completely responsible for the weight of a shoe. An acceptable soccer cleat must combine both durable, efficient, and light materials. Lighter materials are not as durable as thick, bulky ones. However, technology has allowed the synthesis of light, thin, and durable materials such as synthetic leathers. Though, it ultimately depends on each element of the soccer cleat.

Generally, the heaviest part of the shoe is the combination of the midsole and the outsole. This is due to the synthetic rubbers and incorporated technologies. The selection of materials should be especially picky around these elements. However, the upper build can add considerable weight if featuring the wrong fabrics.

 

Shock Absorption

Any soccer players know the importance of an impact-absorbing cleat. Shock absorption is a particularly important element of firm ground soccer cleats. Since they’re more firm than artificial fields, the impact it causes with soccer cleats is much tougher. Thus, firm-ground cleats should be equipped with superior impact absorbing technologies and materials. Jogging shoes that lack shock absorption generate heel pain usually around the first 60 minutes. Now imagine soccer players facing 90 minutes of intensity running without any absorption.

The lack of shock absorption does not only become utterly annoying, but it also gets painful at a certain point. In some cases, pain might even extend to the next day in the form of heel soreness. The absorption relies on the soles (insole, midsole, and outsole). Thus relevant technologies are placed there. Cleats that properly reduce impact make running much easier and painless.

Related factors: Insole, Outsole, Materials, Cushioning

Outsole: The outsole is the first element to enter into contact with the field’s surface. It receives the full impact of each gait, which moves upwards in a vertical way. Usually, the outsole of soccer cleats is not made to absorb impact. This is due to the combination of the specific design and the outsole materials.

Instead, the midsole is equipped with adequate materials to deal with the impact. The midsole plays the biggest role in the process of shock absorption. Some midsoles even use the same energy to impulse the next gait if performed fast enough.

Insole: The insole is the last element standing between the foot and the midsole. While the midsole should absorb shock efficiently, it would still cause damage if the foot was in direct contact with it. This is where shock-absorbing insoles come in. Not all soccer cleats have them, but the EVA insole has become a very popular feature in professional cleats and sports shoes.

This part of the shoe takes care of maintaining comfort during every impact. If it lacks quality, the foot might still be exposed to discomfortabilites from each impact.

Materials: There are multiple factors that are taken into consideration when manufacturing a soccer cleat. The most effective shock absorbers are unquestionably rubber derivates and polyurethane. They compose most outsoles and midsoles of professional modern soccer cleats. However, incorporated technologies might feature different materials, such as foam.

As for the insole, Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA) is the material with the best shock-absorbing qualities. Despite its lightness, it’s a very tough compound when it comes to impact. It also possesses anti-vibrating qualities and resilience strength.

Cushioning: Cushioning might look like a comfort feature at first sight. It takes part in the shock absorption process. The EVA insole, for example, delivers cushioning and impact absorption at the same time. The materials are also related to the amount of cushioning, though it mostly depends on the technologies.

Cushioning technologies such as air cushions and gel cushions have proven to be very efficient. Not only are they utterly comfortable, but they are great absorbers as well.

 

Running Power

Running power is a no-brainer in soccer. The faster you run, the more chances you have of getting the ball. Soccer cleats won’t improve your motor ability to run, no matter how good they are. They can, however, help you make a better use of your running capacity. Multiple factors that are involved in the performance of an optimal running motion. The optimal performance is reached when these factors are all present.

Keep in mind that your cleats can decrease your performance much easier than it can improve it. Professional cleats won’t make you naturally faster like we previously said. Cheap cleats, on the other hand, can stop you from running as fast as you could.

Related factors: Flexibility, Outsole, Weight

Flexibility: As flexibility is involved in the running motion, it’s easy to assume that the running power also will. As flexibility increases gradually, so does running power. The more flex there is present on the forefoot, the more you’re able to lean and take impulse. This is one of the most important factors in a professional soccer cleat, regardless of the field type. There’s flexion involved in the natural running motion. Thus there should be flexibility present in the soccer cleats.

Any decent soccer cleat should be able to have at least 40 degrees of flexibility in the forefoot. If you can’t bend the shoe 40 or 50 degrees upwards, you should reconsider looking for other options. A lack of flexibility will result in significant discomfort while running and a sharp decrease in mobility.

Outsole: To obtain maximum running power, the outsole must be adequately equipped for the type of field. You might be able to wear firm ground outsoles on artificial ground without major consequences. But it doesn’t work like that the other way around. Artificial outsoles won’t offer a good performance on firm ground fields.

The shape of the cleats on the outsole also have an impact on the running form. Their location and shapes are not a coincidence. In fact, they’re placed strategically and serve specific purposes. If your cleat lacks outsole grip, you can forget about running at your top speed.

Weight: There’s a reason why all sports shoes have embraced a lightweight approach. The closer you are to barefoot, the more naturally you’ll be able to run. It’s as simple as that. The weight of your soccer boots has an impact on every single feature of it. When it comes to running power, lighter shoes deliver superior performance.

For instance, bulky and heavy shoes alter your running range of motion. The weight difference between a light shoe and a regular one is insignificant. But it’s not the weight itself what makes you slower; it’s where the weight is placed. The range of motion and motor agility of your feet is directly affected by the amount of weight on them.

 

Ball Touch & Control

You must be wondering how a pair of cleats can help you remain in control of the soccer ball. Soccer shoes can improve control just as much as it can reduce it. The best football cleats deliver a consider amount of ball grip through many of their elements. Feats such as external textures and patterns increase the quality of the contact between the ball and the upper. Although it might seem insignificant, these patterns make a huge difference in ball handling and dribbling. They’re especially important while running, as it’s harder to control the soccer ball.

It’s important to get a good grasp of the ball. But, it’s also important to get sensitiveness on the ball as well. The idea of minimalist shoes is to resemble a barefoot performance. This goes for both the weight of the shoe weight and the sensitiveness.

Related factors: Upper Build, Outsole

Upper Build: The top part of a football shoe should consist of a quality combination between premium fabrics and specific texturing. These fabrics must contain both grip and lightweight properties to deliver greater ball touch and control. The grip is provided by special textures and patterns on the shoe’s higher portion. They usually come in the form of dots or shapes made of the same material, but with a wrinkled texture.

The hardest point of ball control is unquestionably running. Without enough grip on the ball, maneuvering and dribbling become much harder when in movement. Like we previously explained, bulky materials obstruct the foot’s range of motion. This is why it’s important for the upper build to feature lightweight materials as well. Easy, smoother motions make ball control significantly easier.

Outsole: Both the midsole and the outsole take part in ball control. The midsoles usually have lateral panels with patterns similar to the ones we mentioned above. These panels contribute to lateral soccer ball control. Not every motion in football is directed forward. In fact, lateral control is critical in a wide variety of circumstances, including running control and dribbling.

As for the outsole, some football cleats feature underfoot design for ball control. This design includes a measured space and distribution of the studs. Though not all cleats feature this design, shoes that do make quite a difference.

 

Curve & Shooting Accuracy

Motor abilities and physical features are unquestionably important. However, the most important thing in a football game is scoring. While soccer boots can’t aim for you, or score the goals alone, they can determine the result of a strike. Multiple factors can determine whether the ball ends on the net or against the post. We’re talking about physical factors, of course. Different parts of the shoe are involved in the process of adding spin to a soccer ball.

The upper build is mostly the element that determines the quality of the ball rotation after a strike. Given that technique is good, an upper build with the right features can make an enormous difference. However, there’s much more behind curves and accuracy than just fabrics. Things such as the weight of the cleat and the control over the ball become influencing factors as well.

Related factors: Upper Build, Weight, Ball Touch & Control

Upper Build: The materials which compose the upper build have an influence over the amount of friction between the soccer ball and the shoe. This friction is the one responsible for the curve that the ball will have. Though it ultimately depends on the striking technique, these materials can make the small difference needed to score.

Some soccer shoes include patterns around the most common striking areas to optimize each kick. These patterns make adding spin to the ball much easier, and more secure. Leather builds are great materials to keep control on the amount of spin and accuracy. The idea of the upper build is not to give more or less spin; it’s to maintain the one you aim to give.

Weight: A shoe’s weight is another influencing factor in accuracy. By delivering a minimalist build, soccer boots allow players to kick as if they were barefoot. The lightest the shoe, the more accurate the shots. By accurate we mean the ball will go where you aim; weight won’t affect the trajectory. The weight of the shoe won’t alter your technique, only the execution.

A bulky boot might add more force to the kick than what is really necessary. Thinner builds, on the other hand, barely add any additional power or rotation to strikes.

Ball Touch & Control: The better grasp you have of the ball, the better accuracy you’ll have. It’s as simple as that. Sensitive materials allow you to naturally direct the ball thanks to the quality of the contact. The shoe should resemble the exact motion your foot is performing; no tilts, no sliding.

How the cleat fits affect both curve and accuracy. A slim, tight shoe will prevent any internal movements, delivering a solid and precise strike. On the other hand, you can’t expect much from football shoes that wiggles all over your foot.

Outsole

The outsole is a critical part of every sports shoe. Each discipline has a specific type of outsole because all the other elements often rely on it. This is the case of soccer. Each modality has a specific type of outsole, and each modality may have different types of field. Field soccer is one of this cases. In this guide, we’re evaluating firm ground cleats. The most important feature in a firm ground outsole is the grip. Though, there are other feats that should be present as well.

Flexibility, for example, is essential in the outsole plate to optimize running. The outsole is the base of the soccer cleat. It works as a platform, a stabilizer, a grip, and an accelerator. On this shoe, the grip is provided by the studs. The studs are what actually enter into contact with the field, as the outsole plate doesn’t.

Related factors: Grip, Flexibility

Grip: The grip is the center of the performance in firm ground shoes. If your cleats lack grip, your game, in general, will be poor. A professional football shoe offers satisfactory traction at all times. The grip is needed in every moment of the game, especially when running. Firm ground shoes need bigger studs in comparison to artificial grounds. Without studs, players would just slide away.

A firm ground pair of shoes with no grip are as good as a pair of sandals. The outsole cleats are strategically distributed to provide better support and stability. Their placement makes it possible to deliver multi-directional grip. This is utterly important when striking and running, as these motions often require inclination.

Flexibility: This feature must be present for the shoe to resemble to natural running motion. A football shoe that lacks outsole flexibility will never be able to reach the most optimal range of motion. Flexibility is important on the upper’s forefoot, and the same applies to the outsole. While not the whole outsole has the be flexible, the pressure point where the foot bends naturally does.

The lack of flexibility will become an annoying obstacle while running. Not only is it discomfortable to run in a stiff, rigid shoe, but you also won’t be able to reach your best speed. The outsole should bend along the forefoot, having at least a 40 degree inclination on the forefoot area.

 

FAQ

Q: What does FG/AG/SG mean?

A: It stands for Firm Ground/Artificial Ground/Soft Ground, making reference to the field’s surface.

Q: Where to buy soccer cleats?

A: Internet sales platforms, such as Amazon, have the best deals and offer good return policies. Retail stores are good as well, allowing you to try them.

Q: How much are soccer cleats?

A: Fresh world-class celebrity endorsed releases can cost up to 400 USD. That’s for top performance shoes, other go as low as $30.

Q: What soccer cleats should I get?

A: This guide reviews firm ground cleats, which are for steady, natural low-grass fields. Other fields require different outsoles.

Q: How do soccer cleats look like?

A: Soccer cleats don’t have studs under the end of the shoe. Baseball, football, and lacrosse cleats do.

Q: Is leather better for cleats?

A: Leathers have different benefits and applications, but it doesn’t mean they’re better. They do are some of the best materials though.

Q: Should I get metal studs?

A: If you can train with them, go ahead. They provide a better grip and usually are replaceable, but they’re not allowed on most professional competitions for safety reasons.

Q: How long do cleats last?

A: Easily over a year if you take good care of them. A quality cleat could last 3 years or longer without any difficulties or replacements.

Q: What size of cleats should I wear?

A: Your size according to the product chart. The fit should be acceptably tight; not too tight, and definitely not loose.

Q: Can I use them without socks?

A: No, you shouldn’t. Soccer cleat insole fabrics are usually not made for sockless use, you might deal with irritation afterward.

History of Soccer Cleats

Who created soccer cleats?

Soccer is a sport with origins that date back to 200-300 B.C. However, there were no signs of soccer cleats until the 16th century. King Henry VIII was credited as the first owner of football cleats. Though it remains unclear to this day, speculation has led to believing that shoemaker Cornelius Johnson designed the first pair. This is the same pair that King Henry VIII would later lay hands on. But, they were nothing like the cleats we know today.

When were soccer cleats invented?

It hasn’t been accurately determined yet, but it’s possible that the first pair was designed somewhere around 1525. The manufacturer was Cornelius Johnson, and he was attributed as the first man to design soccer cleats. However, soccer cleats have a long line of inventions and improvements over the years.

Soccer players would take their hard leather work boots and hammer metal studs on the sole to increase traction. As you can probably guess, these weren’t the best choices for soccer footwear. It wasn’t until 1800 that the popularity of soccer increased radically, along with the demand for better shoes. Players realized that slimmer, comfortable shoes would make a much better option than boots. Though, this also created a lot of commotion within the rules. Metal studs now had to be round to prevent injury.

The shoes remained mainly composed of hard leather, which became considerably heavy with rain. The first big reinvention came around 1940-1960 when manufacturing became stronger than ever before. Cleats became cheaper and more functional. This reinvention is the base of modern day cleats, where the shoes focus on performance rather than protection.

The very first soccer cleat manufacturer was PUMA around 1948. They made the first pair of replaceable cleats, which were made of plastic and rubber instead of traditional metal. Though, their inventions reached their peak around 1960. This year, they would manufacture the pair of cleats that were worn by the soccer legend, Pelé.

 

Are you shoes not as shiny as they used to be? Maybe they just need a thorough cleaning (Link).

Do your feet not smell so pleasant? Here’s how to fix that (Link).

Sources

  1. Azom, Materials Used in Soccer Boots, Article, Nov 21, 2012
  2. Wikipedia, Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA), Wiki Article,
  3. MorEVAFoam, EVA foam vs Pu foam, Foam Info Publication, May 20, 2015
  4. I Love to Watch You Play, Not All Cleats are the Same, Sports Article, Oct 13, 2015
  5. Golden Shoes Movie, History of Soccer Cleats, Informative Publication, Oct 11, 2013