From this point forward, football is never going to be the same. At least that is what Nike’s marketing is pushing as the main message of their brand new boot, the Magista. Now that’s big talk. Not every new release inspires such discussion and it’s undeniable that the Magista is innovative and unique. This thing is out to redefine how soccer cleats look and perform. So, the question becomes: Will the Magista really change football boots forever?
I apologize if I was misleading up there, but we will not be able to answer that question today. Sorry. Nike’s latest line doesn’t even go on pre-order until April 29th. What we can do is feast our eyes on what Nike R&D labs have been cooking up for the last four years.
With Spain’s Andres Iniesta and Germany’s Mario Götze testing and providing feedback, the new Magista is designed for the playmaker and creator on the pitch. In crashing the party, it is replacing Nike’s CTR360 Maestri line, which was popular among boot fans. However, with its revolutionary tech specs, I don’t think the Magista will have issues winning over new fans.
The first thing you notice on the Magista is the yellow and black mid-cut sock rising up from the ankle. Obviously, this is unlike almost anything we have seen from a soccer cleat (besides the adidas Primeknit FS, also released today, which is an unbelievable coincidence, right?). Nike is calling this the Dynamic Fit Collar and its purpose is to enhance the touch and feel on the ball by creating a “locked-down fit”. While that terminology doesn’t scream “comfort”, the goal of the Dynamic Fit Collar is to cause the foot, ankle, and lower leg to work as a single unit. It sounds like I’m describing the Terminator, but Nike’s VP of Sport Performance Footwear Phil McCartney claims that, “With Magista, we’ve designed a shoe that feels like an extension of the player’s body. This isn’t a boot that just goes on your foot, it’s a boot that works with your foot”.
Another key piece of tech innovation is the Flyknit upper on the Magista. If you’re not familiar with Flyknit (and it’s important that you are with this release), you can read more about it here and here. After a couple years of seeing the material move from running shoes to basketball, it has finally arrived in soccer. With a knit-constructed upper, the Magista can have a super lightweight and “sock-like” feel to it. For added strength, Nike has included something called “Brio cables”. They are knitted into this one-piece upper and also make the construction of this shoe sound more like the Brooklyn Bridge than a soccer boot.
At this point, you may be scratching your head and wondering how a knitted upper will keep you protected from the elements and from another player’s flying spikes. Well, this material isn’t exactly the same as your auntie’s homemade scarf. For additional security from cold temperatures, rain, and a 200-pound fullback‘s cleat landing on yours, Nike has decked the Magista out with a very thin layer of their trademark NikeSkin. This goes over the top of the Flyknit and still allows the boot to have that second-skin feel.
Finally, the outsole contains a Pebax and nylon soleplate to help with traction. This keeps it wonderfully light and allows for durability with just the right amount of flexibility. It’s also the only Nike cleat with an all-conical stud configuration. You can tell Nike engineered this for the Iniesta-type midfielder, someone who is all over the field, turning on a dime. They are dedicated to the 360-degree technology on this creation.
Of course there will still be question marks surrounding this release from Nike. How will the sock-like attachment hold up over time? Will the upper really provide enough protection from the dangers of a typical soccer game? How do you go about cleaning it? Still, Nike can take heart in the fact that true innovation always has critics and those that question practicality.
On Nike.com’s Magista page, the tagline is in all-caps: “SOCCER WILL NEVER BE THE SAME”. This is an extremely loud and confident statement from the Swoosh. So, while we can’t confirm that quite yet, we can say that the Magista has quickly snatched our attention. It goes on retail May 22nd, when we can finally get our hands on it and see for ourselves.