WHILE no one will deny barefoot skill is the dream, the niftiest footwork on the pitch plays out better when we have the best football boots possible.
And as with any sports shoes, the brand is always a big sway – they have a reputation to maintain, it stands to reason they won’t cut corners when it comes to quality.
But unlike regular sports trainers (which can often be dictated by fashion), football boots need a few more considerations.
The right fit, suitability to your preferred position of play, the surface being played on.
Get the wrong boot and you won’t just play badly, you could risk serious injury.
More than how good they look, your primary considerations are: durability, comfort and grip (look for boots that are ‘anti-slip’, sometimes referred to as ‘lock down’).
Be realistic about your skill level. Having a boot that’s super-light but offers little protection won’t be right if you’re primarily making tackles, while a boot designed for strikers may work against you if you’re better suited to dribbling.
We’ve gathered the best football studs around to help you find a sure-fire winner.
What are the most comfortable football boots?
If you’re going to splash out on a pair of footie boots, you need to make sure they’re comfy.
Don’t be blinded by colourful boots by expensive brands.
They might be offering the hottest new features, but comfort should come first.
We’ve picked the most comfortable boots from a range of brands, like Adidas and Nike, to get you started.
How should football boots fit?
It’s common knowledge that you’ll have to ‘break in’ your kicks before you can properly wear them on the pitch.
If they feel really uncomfortable as soon as you put them on, you have to think about why.
Are they too small? Are they the wrong pair for you?
You should always be able to wiggle your toes, this way your feet have just enough room to breathe.
Think about the material too – will it stretch over time?
1. Best boots for defenders
- Nike Tiempo Legend VII, £130 at Lovell Soccer – buy here
Defensive boots are all about setting the tempo, so comfort and flexible fit are a must.
Made of supple kangaroo leather, the feet can move freely inside Tiempo Legend while kept secure, thanks to the flyknit tech on the heel and tongue, which also ensures a more dominating touch of the ball.
These boots feature Nike Grip, sockliner with low-profile cushioning and durability heightened by the compressed nylon plate (for apparent hyperstability).
Perfect for firm ground or wet short-grass pitches.
2. Best boots for dribbling
- Adidas Predator 19+, £229.95 at Adidas – buy here
Dribbling is all about ball control, and the specially engineered Controlskin upper of the Predator 19+ keeps the ball glued to your feet.
The PureCut sock comes with no edges, overlay or laces, making for lighter feet and easier ball control at high speed.
Featuring a lockdown fit with a PrimeKnit upper the Predator 19+ moulds to your heel shape to give the maximum feel of the ball.
3. Best football boots for goalkeepers
• Puma Future 19+, £179 at Sports Direct – buy here
Goalies have to constantly change direction and spring into a save, so the snug fit and flex of the Puma 19+ are ideal, thanks to its EvoKnit Pro upper designed for natural flex and motion, with the Netfit lacing system allowing for a more customised fit.
The outsole propels as well as it protects on high speed, while the grip – so essential to goalkeepers – keeps you grounded both on a firm pitch and artificial grass.
4. Best boots for midfielders
- New Balance Tekela Pro FG, £200 at New Balance – buy here
Made of synthetic leather with a durable leather sole, the Tekela Pro is designed for smooth twists and turns, thanks to its full foot microfibre upper with kinetic stitch embroidered bands that allow for complete 360 degrees traction.
Features elasticated mid-cut mesh collar for lock in, lightweight mesh lining for comfort, and a pliable plate for tricks and swerves on the pitch. Best for firm ground.
5. Best football boots for strikers
- Nike PhantomVNM £160 at Lovell Soccer – buy here
Engineered for powerful, precise strikes, the 12 bladed studs on the instep of the Phantom VNM create spin to control the flight of the ball, while flywire cables that go all through the instep keep the feet locked in.
Featuring an upper made of the softest synthetic microfibre, and a flexible plate provide all the necessary stability and traction. Suitable for wet or sun-baked natural grass pitches.
MORE FROM SUN SELECTS FASHION
Enjoyed our roundup of the best football boots? You may also like our selection of the best running shoes you can buy.
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