Today we present to your attention a post in which we have selected 10 of the most iconic and innovative models of boots over the past 25 years. After all, the 4football project is obviously best known for selling… of course, football boots.

Given the wide range of football shoes from such major brands as Adidas, Nike, Lotto, PUMA and many others, of course, some of you (by “some of you” we mean the most “hardcore” connoisseurs of football boots) will be able to pick up several dozen models that have undoubtedly left their mark on history football. We have selected 10 samples of football boots, which, in our opinion, have had a significant impact on the world of football. It should be noted that at the same time there are much more models of boots worthy of mention. For example, it is worth noting the Adidas Copa Mundial of 1979 – perhaps one of the most revolutionary models of football shoes of all time. At the same time, we sincerely hope that many of you will agree with the list below.

Nike Mercurial R9 – 1998

Let’s start with the Nike Mercurial R9 model of 1998 – the first model from the Nike Mercurial series, which was developed based on the concept of shoes for sprinters and R9 technology, focused on sudden changes in direction of movement. This model has become famous for its innovative upper made of synthetic leather and textured coating in the toe area for extra grip. This model became the progenitor of high-speed football boots.

Adidas Predator Mania – 2002

The first incarnation of the Predator line in 1994 was perhaps the most revolutionary, since this model introduced us to the technology involving the use of rubber elements to create additional grip and rotation when hitting the ball. At the same time, the Mania model from 2002 really expanded the design concept of football shoes, including thanks to the famous long tongue, which was fixed with the help of the world-famous elastic band and SL-rubber elements. To whom this is not enough, keep in mind that such football legends as Beckham, Zidane, Raul and Del Piero played in these boots in the best years of their careers. That is why Mania 2002 is considered the best model of football shoes by many fans of the Predator line.

Nike Mercurial Vapor 1 – 2002

Nike’s significant breakthrough in the high-speed segment. Uniform and lighter construction with a one-piece upper made of ultralight NikeSkin material and an ultra-high-speed elastic sole with elongated spikes to create maximum grip on the field surface. The Vapor 1 model was provocative because it violated all the stereotypes and conventions relevant at that time, creating a feeling of full contact with the ball.

Lotto Zhero Gravity – 2006

These first in the history of the industry boots without laces were developed by Lotto in 2006 as a successor to the extremely popular Lotto Zhero + model, These are high-speed boots, which, obviously, were the forerunners of the F50 adizero and a powerful competitor to the Mercurial Vapor III. The Zhero Gravity model was created according to a similar pattern, but at the same time it had a hole that allowed players to insert their foot into the boot using a regular shoe horn. This made it possible to ensure a tight fit without impairing the touch. Adidas re-embodied this concept in 2016 in the ACE 16+ PURECONTROL model – boots without laces with a woven top, however, as we found out, they were not its creators.

Adidas F50 Adizero – 2010

Another significant member of the family of speed boots. These boots were distinguished by an ultra-thin upper and an incredibly light sole with a thickness of only 1 mm. This model was a so-called half construction, in which the inner sole was present only in the front part of the foot, and not over its entire surface, as in the traditional design. And, by the way, these boots weighed only 156 grams, which was completely unheard of in 2010. In addition, this model was made of genuine leather, which allowed these high-speed boots to gain huge popularity among football players around the world, which was a real breakthrough after several difficult years for the Mercurial series.

Nike Hypervenom Phantom – 2013

One of the best models of boots made by Nike and for all time. This is a truly iconic model, because it marked the beginning of one of the most successful periods for the Nike football department in the history of the brand. The technologies used in the Hypervenom model were truly innovative, and the durable mesh upper design, which provided an incredibly soft, sock-like feel and a truly supernatural ball feeling. They’re just really cool cleats.

PUMA evoPOWER – 2014

PUMA, going their own way, presented the evoPOWER model at the beginning of 2014, designed to allow the player’s foot to bend naturally and ensure its position, which would make it possible to deliver more powerful blows. At least, this was the “know-how” of PUMA, achieved as a result of research conducted in collaboration with the National Research Institute of Germany. This made it possible to develop an upper and sole that could bend in both directions. And, although we cannot say that other brands copied the technology and concept of PUMA, this German manufacturer began to have a tendency to explore alternative ways, which are clearly visible in the FUTURE model, which included the NETFIT concept. This is an excellent, undeservedly underestimated and very iconic model of boots.

Nike Magista Obra – 2014

One of the most iconic models of boots in our era. These are the first football boots with a sock made of knitted material, which determined the future of the industry to such an extent that all brands today produce gaming shoes made of woven materials. Nike introduced Flyknit technology, which we first saw on Nike running shoes during the Olympic Games two years earlier. At the same time, there was a high Dynamic Fit collar in their design, which provided players with a feeling reminiscent of playing in socks.

Adidas ACE16 + Purecontrol – 2016

The first football boots from Adidas without a lacing system, which gave rise to a new trend. Thanks to the stylish modern design, Adidas has seriously and permanently set a new direction in the industry. ACE technology was also used, which really defined the current agenda for marketing and innovation. The Primeknit soft fiber upper together with the internal design for better foot fixation allowed the ACE16+ model to produce a powerful “wow” effect.

Adidas COPA 19+ – 2018

Adidas recreated the magic of the COPA series by introducing modern leather cleats, which, in addition to not having laces, were also produced using FUSIONSKIN technology, which allows you to connect leather elements as if it were an innovative microfiber upper. Previously, if it was necessary to use details such as logos or rubber elements in the design of the leather upper, they had to be sewn, which made the leather more rigid. However, the invention of FUSIONSKIN technology made it possible to preserve the softness and elasticity of the skin, while making it more water-resistant, repelling moisture more effectively.

That’s it, friends. This was a list of the ten most iconic and innovative models of boots in our opinion over the past 25 years – from 1995 to 2020. We hope you will agree with our selection. If not, then we suggest waiting another 25 years and see how the football shoe manufacturing industry will develop. We are almost sure that by the time we turn 50, the boots will be just insanely technological, but probably not as iconic as the 10 models that we noted in this article. See you soon!

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