Buying a pair of soccer shoes is a big decision. I know, it took me about a month to decide on which pair I was buying. I tried on about every pair of shoes that are on the market today. For those of you looking to purchase a new pair of cleats, I will share my experience for this season and hope it helps you with your decision.
First off, let me state that every single foot is unique and just because someone else says X shoe is the best, doesn’t mean it will be for you as well. That being said, I will tell you I have a pretty big foot, I wear size 11 and my foot is fairly wide. Which to my disappointment ruled out the Nike Mercurial Vapors. Don’t get me wrong the Vapors are awesome, and they were my top choice before trying them on. If you compare them side by side to, let’s say the Hypervenom, you’ll notice just by looking at them the Vapor is a narrower shoe especially around the tarsals. I’m not exaggerating, when I took off the Vapor, after walking around in it for a couple of minutes I felt the blood rushing back to my feet. Which was definitely disappointing for me as, in my opinion, the Vapor is the best looking soccer cleat currently on the market. With Vapor off my list, I began to consider the Hypervenom, which was a great fit and comfortable but I just didn’t like the available color ways. Picky? Yes. The lime green and orange just didn’t do it for me, So I moved on.
Two shoes down, I grabbed Nike’s CTR360 and Nike Tiempo. The CTR360 fit fairly well but I still felt there was room for improvement and the Tiempo’s ultra soft fronts just weren’t my style. Again, I am picky. So I moved on to Nike’s competition, adidas. I had worn the Nitrocharge before, and knew that I liked it. But after comparing it to the shoes I had just tried on, I really fell in love with it. It fit my foot perfectly. I know some “technological features” on soccer shoes can be mostly for marketing, but I the Energypulse offers a real advantage. Whether you have wider or narrower feet, the Energysling offered the elasticity to fit pull tight and keep my foot snug, while allowing comfort and movement.
Nitrocharge 1.0 TRX was my pick this season. Who knows what it will be next.
When buying a shoe for yourself make sure to keep in mind a few things. First off is fit. If you go to SoccerPro.com and find a shoe, use the ShoeFitr app to see how it will fit compared to your last shoe. ShoeFitr will also help you choose your size since not every manufacturer and model will be the same. Another thing to consider is material. If you live in an area that gets a lot of rain in your playing season, you might want to avoid leather, as it will absorb water and is much more difficult to clean mud off your shoes. Also consider your usage. If you’re going to be spending a treasure on a shoe, consider buying a take down model as well to practice in or wear in inclement weather conditions.