Just Arrived: Umbro Speciali R and Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly III

Just Arrived posts are always great, because they precede reviews, which inevitably means we get to test another pair of football boots! This time around, we have just received two brand new pair of boots, two that are from different completely sides of the soccer shoe spectrum. Thanks to Aaron Lavery for sending the Umbro Speciali R and to Alex Pickett for getting us the Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly III.

Umbro are introducing a new material, one which is the offspring of Nike’s involvement with the brand and the Kanga-Lite they featured on the Nike CTR360 Maestri’s, called Kanga Touch. This helps reduce the weight of the boot without affecting the touch, much like the Kanga-Lite featured on Nike’s football boots is meant to do.

Another design element borrowed from Nike is the perforated lightweight compression molded insole with Poron Pads for optimal comfort. These are the same Poron inserts used in the Nike Total 90 Laser III and CTR360 Maestri II, designed to stop your foot from slipping and rubbing in the boot.

Performance innovation for the Nike Mercurial Vapor SuperFly III also features a unique adaptive traction system where designers incorporated adaptive studs in the forefoot that can extend and retract by up to 3mm, based on ground conditions and pressure exerted by the player. As a result, the boot delivers superb traction and responsiveness to ensure one its player capitalizes on the tightest of scoring opportunities.

Directionally positioned blades maximize cutting and allow for quick changes of direction, while secondary toe traction provides added toe-off power for those first critical steps. Collectively, these design details allow greater speed and quickness in all directions. Nike Flywire technology is also incorporated into the boot’s streamlined upper provides a lightweight, strong and more dynamic fit.

We’ll be testing the boots and seeing how they perform, so you can expect our reviews up in around a month’s time, so stay tuned!

Nike CTR360 Maestri II Elite Black/Challenge Red/White

In a week full of Nike releases, the US company have released their latest colorway for the Nike CTR360 Maestri II Elite, one which is sure to please football boot lovers as it is attractive despite not calling for too much attention. If you want to see how the boot performs, check out our Nike CTR360 Maestri II Elite Review.

Although being just launched over a year and a half ago, the Nike CTR360 Maestri range has become one of the biggest, if not the biggest cleat collection in the world. With thousands of professionals, including some of the greatest in the game sporting the boots, the CTR360 has been well received by most in the football boot community. Nike have released their latest colorway for the range, one which we’ve already seen make its on field debut, with England U21’s Ryan Bertrand wearing them in the Euro Championships.

The upper features Kanga-Lite synthetic leather which mirrors the properties of natural kangaroo leather, while offering durability in an easy to care for upper material. Innovative built-in features like dampening pods and asymmetrical lacing deliver maximum ball control and optimal passing-pace.

The insole consists of a high performance, molded sockliner with Poron low profile cushioning which then delivers great under the foot comfort.

The outsole is made of carbon fiber with direct-injected bladed studs for traction on firm, natural surfaces. It also features a carbon reinforced chassis engineered for exceptional energy return and strength.

Ball Control Elements Has Ball Control Elements
Date Released 2010
External Heel Counter No Counter
How Attached To Upper Injected to Upper
Insole Material PORON
Insole Removable Removable
Lacing Off Center Laces
Number of Studs 14 Studs
Primary Upper Material Synthetic
Removable Studs Not Removable
Secondary Upper Material Synthetic
Shoe Classification Control
Sizing Runs True to Size
Special Outsole Performance Features No Special Features
Stud Material PU
Stud Shape Bladed Studs
Suitable For Suitable for Firm Ground
Weight Light 8-9oz


What do you think of the new Nike CTR360 Maestri II Elite Black/Challenge Red/White colorway?

Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly III Granite/Solar Red/Imperial Purple

In what Jordon called the worst kept secret ever, Nike have finally decided to officially launch the new colorway for the Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly III. Following very bright launch colorways, this more subtle approach in the form of Granite/Solar Red/Imperial Purple may appeal to more people. We’ve already seen how they look on the pitch, but we now have images from the official launch.

Performance innovation for the Nike Mercurial Vapor SuperFly III also features a unique adaptive traction system where designers incorporated adaptive studs in the forefoot that can extend and retract by up to 3mm, based on ground conditions and pressure exerted by the player. As a result, the boot delivers superb traction and responsiveness to ensure one its player capitalizes on the tightest of scoring opportunities.

Directionally positioned blades maximize cutting and allow for quick changes of direction, while secondary toe traction provides added toe-off power for those first critical steps. Collectively, these design details allow greater speed and quickness in all directions.

Nike Flywire technology incorporated into the boot’s streamlined upper provides a lightweight, strong and more dynamic fit. Nike Flywire technology utilizes high-strength threads that act like cables on a suspension bridge, delivering engineered support precisely where it’s needed. This revolutionary technology transforms how footwear is engineered by reducing the amount of material required for the upper of a soccer cleat to the bare minimum without compromising on durability or integrity and support. The strength of Nike Flywire technology is created through optimal placement of threads providing support where players need it most, coupled with highly tuned composite upper package that locks the threads in place, allowing the upper to adapt to the motion of the foot.

The Nike Mercurial Vapor SuperFly III gives footballers exclusive access to training insights from top players and coaches through Nike Football+. Each pair of boots comes with a unique user code to unlock insider tips and Master Speed training content.

We just received our pair of the Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly III, so stay tuned for our in-depth review of the speed boots! Credit to SoccerPro.com for the images.

Ball Control Elements No Ball Control Elements
Date Released 2011
External Heel Counter No Counter
How Attached To Upper Injected to Upper
Insole Material PORON
Insole Removable Removable
Lacing Centered Laces
Number of Studs 12 Studs
Primary Upper Material Synthetic
Removable Studs Not Removable
Shoe Classification Speed
Sizing Runs True to Size
Special Outsole Performance Features Has Special Features
Stud Material PU
Stud Shape Bladed Studs, Other Stud Shapes
Suitable For Suitable for Firm Ground
Weight Super Light < 8oz

The Defender’s Choice: Umbro Speciali Statement

The Defender’s Choice: Umbro Speciali Statement

Summer 2011 Kicks Off!

Last summer we kicked off the Defender’s Choice with reviews on several boots that were popular at the time, especially Nike’s CTR360, which was launched in time for the World Cup in South Africa. This summer, as Wimbledon rears its lovely head starting Monday, and as England looks to progress to the knock out rounds in Denmark for the Euro U21 Championships, the Defender’s Choice returns with more reviews for Soccer Review’s budding footballers. As with previous entries in this section, these analyses are written from a defender’s standpoint, focusing on qualities that we look for in football boots without going into too many of the technical details, instead leaving that to the other gurus here on the site.

Thank you to Pieter, I was able to get my hands on a lovely pair of Umbro Speciali Statements. I noted in my review of the CTR360 that I have been excited about Umbro’s (then latest) addition to the footballing market. After trying them on in a store in Switzerland, I was simply in awe at the extreme comfort and lightness of the boot. Upon wearing my testing pair for the first time, I was reminded of Umbro’s supreme command of their supple k-leather. The touch on this boot is phenomenal. And I say that after having played with the CTRs. On my first training session with these boots (between just me and a ball), I was blown away by the softness of the leather, and the touch that they provided. Now, I do support the argument that the player makes the boot and not the other way around, but as with every other sport, 90% of football is the mental challenge. Being a fullback does allow me the fortune of not necessarily requiring a perfect touch (slip up on the flank and you give away a throw in. Slip up as a centre half and you give away a goal), but these boots mean that I don’t have to focus too much on making sure that the ball isn’t going to bounce off my foot and end up god-knows-where.

Having previously owned a pair of Adidas’s second generation Adipures, I was pleasantly surprised at the weight of the Specialis. For a leather boot, the Umbro Speciali is extremely light. And as a fullback, weight is something that I do take rather seriously. My past experience with Umbro’s SX Valor II boots was a very positive one, as I expressed in a previous review, but I do admit that it is a heavy boot. Protective, for sure – I felt like nothing could touch me feet in that – but bulky, and not exactly ideal for bombing up and down the flanks. In the Specialis, however, Umbro have found that perfect combination by creating a low profile boot that is light and provides protection. I noted that it was a low profile boot because the fore step (lower portion of the boot toward the toes) is reminiscent of Adidas’s Predator series, which were traditionally low lying and excellent for crossing. Unlike its SX Valor counterpart, the Speciali’s low profile enhances the curve on balls when struck properly. As a fullback, this is certainly key.

I also want to touch on the A-Frame structure that Umbro has made a key fixture of their GT Pro, Speciali Statement, Elite, and R boots. Never before have I played in a boot that hugged my foot this tightly. Literally, where the foot goes, the boot goes, and the ball goes (most of the time!). When I say that it hugs the foot, I don’t necessarily mean that it plays like barefoot, which I don’t particularly enjoy. On the underside of the tongue (on the inside of the boot) is a soft cushioned padding. It is these small little things that make the Speciali even more special and dear to the heart. The frame of the boot complements the stud formation well. The Specialis have conical studs (the kind that Sir Alex would approve of), and they are divided into parts that allow for increased flexibility in the forefoot. In a sport and in a position on the pitch where the first three steps usually make the difference between a clean sheet and a goal deficit, the added flexibility offers better grip off the turf, making me at least feel like I’m pushing off with greater force and more stability.

Tomorrow will be game four with these boots and another run out with them that dates back to April when the snow finally melted. I do apologise to our readers, as this was an extraordinarily long review to process from receiving the boot to finally posting my thoughts, but I wanted to make sure that everything that the Specialis could be put through was tested. They’ve been worn on grass, on artificial turf (good and bad), in the rain, in the sun, in dry and slick conditions. They’ve been worn once a week, training four times a week. Pretty much left unattended, washed after use. And they are still in sublime condition, which is not what a number of Adidas’s and Nike’s boots can say despite pristine care. This is a true testament to Umbro’s dedication and commitment to making the best football boots available at a reasonable price (I believe Umbro’s boots have been consistently under 80 pounds Sterling).

This boot gets my full recommendation for any position out there. Players from all sorts of positions are/were wearing this boot – Joe Hart in goal; Stephen Warnock, Phil Jagielka, John Terry, Michael Dawson, Tony Hibbert, and Seamus Coleman all wore these boots in defence; Deco, Jordan Henderson, Kevin Foley, and Barry Ferguson in midfield; while Michael Owen, Darren Bent, and Andy Carroll were all prominent Speciali wearers. For any defender out there, these Specialis should DEFINITELY at the top of your shortlist (or near the top) if you are looking for boots this summer.

Wiki(Kit)Leaks: Manchester United Third Kit

Almost all the Premier League kits have been released now, but there are still a couple more Wiki(Kit)Leaks to come, and this time around we feature Manchester United’s soon to be released third kit!



As a Liverpool fan, nothing good about Manchester United usually comes out of my mouth, but I have to say this is a fantastic looking kit! Although it is quite plain the red collar makes all the difference. The third kit is also the same template as the home kit so all the specs are the same.

Spec: The light weight kits (13% lighter than previous versions) actively regulate the players’ body temperatures on the pitch to help keep them dry and cool at all times through use of Nike Dri-FIT technology. This technology draws sweat away from the player’s body through the material where it can evaporate.

Temperature regulation is helped by ventilation zones, consisting of hundreds of tiny laser cut holes from the under arms to the waistband, allowing air to circulate to help keep players dry, cool and comfortable. For the first time the club crest on the front of the shirt is heat transferred, making it even lighter and crucially allowing this area to now be ventilated as well.

The shirt has a new aerodynamic fit this season, now slimmer and more athletic, providing 17% more stretch than the Barcelona shirt of two years ago. While a bonded hem offers a streamlined look that reduces irritation caused by chafing.

What are your thoughts on Manchester United’s new third kit?


Boot Spotting: 19th June

Boot spottings may be hard to come by in the off season, but the competitions still running have provided a few unique spots, including retro and unreleased boots. And because no Soccer Reviews boot spotting is complete without a surprise, and you’ll never guess, or believe, which league it’s from.

Christian Eriksen (Denmark U21) – Mercurial Superfly III

These Silver/Red/Grey, along with the Black/Red/White CTR 360 Maestri, are potentially Nike’s worst ever kept secret. They don’t get released until tomorrow (kudos to the guy who put that on one of our comments today) and all the pros are already wearing it! They don’t really stand out a huge amount on the pitch, which could see this colourway turn out to be pretty popular.

David Siradze ( PFC Spartak Nalchik) – Lotto Zhero Evolution

Geez that looks like it hurt! Plus it looks like he might have felt it! This is a really rare spot of the Lotto Zhero Evoution which were released in 2008. When we reviewed this boot we found it to be a supremely comfortable cleat so no surprise that Siradze has kept with them for so long.

Denis Polyakov (Belarus U21) – Leather AdiZero Blackout

This was one of Adidas’ final releases before the release of the AdiZero Prime, but this and the whiteout edition of the AdiZero turned out to be a huge hit in the semi-professional leagues. The blackout leather AdiZeros aren’t seen on the feet of too many pros, but Polyakov must be a fan of the low profile AdiZeros.

Frank Feltscher (Switzerland U21) – Puma V1.10 SL

Maybe someone forgot to Frank Feltscher that a new range of Puma speedboots have been released, but they still help him score as Switzerland beat Belarus 3-0 at the u21 European championships.

Granit Xhaka (Switzerland U21) – Puma V1.11 SL

Granit must have been in contact with Puma, as they’ve supplied him with the new V1.11s, which were only released a few weeks ago. He has decided to wear the SL versions of the V1.11, which are a little lighter than its non-SL cousin.

Nicolai Agger (Denmark U21) – Adidas AdiPower

Even though the latest AdiPower has been complemented for it’s good looks, perhaps Nicolai Agger didn’t think they stood out on the pitch enough, as he decided to put fluro yellow laces on his blue AdiPowers.

Vagner Love (CSKA Moscow) – Leather AdiZero blackout

Now a boot spot from the guy with the best/most distinguished/worst (pick whichever one you want) haircut in football! Vagner Love wore the soft blackout AdiZeros as his side took on Spartak Nalchik.

Jean Alexandre (Real Salt Lake) – AdiPure SL

AdiPure SL spots are almost nonexistant, we’ve only caught glimpse of a handful of players prior to this spot wearing them. However, this is the first time (I believe) we have spotted a player wearing the white AdiPure SLs.

Mat Reis (New England Revolution) – Puma V1.11

Another Puma V1.11 spot coming this time from an unlikely source. New England’s goalkeeper managed to get his hands on a pair of the newly released boots and we have to say his colour coordination is brilliant.

Yaser Alrawashdeh (Jordan) – Mercurial Vapor IV

In a showcase of old and new Mercurials, Alrawashdeh provided us with a rare spot of the green Mercurial Vapor IV in his sides Olympic Qualifying Match against South Korea’s U-23 team.

Kim Tae-Hwan (L), Ahmad Ali (R) (Korea U23, Jordan) – Puma V1.08, Mizuno Morelia Waves (KR)

Another spot from the Olympic Qualifying match and this one is a peach. Kim Tae Hwan spotted in the throwback Puma V1.08s in an awesome looking silver colourway and, the real surprise Ahmad Ali in what we believe to be the Mizuno Moreila Waves (KR). We believe that this certain Mizuno Morelia Wave colourway can only be found in Korea so it’s a bit ironic how the Jordanian is wearing them.

Keylor Navas (Costa Rica) – Pirma Force X-1

Another Pirma spot from the Gold Cup. This time we have Costa Rica’s goalkeeper, Keylor Navas in the turquoise colourway of the rather mysterious boots.

Danny Welbeck (England U-21) – Tiempo Legend IV Elite

In true England fashion, England’s U21 European Championship performance has been pretty dissapointing. This boot spot however is anything but, Danny Welbeck spotted in a customized pair of Tiempo Legend IV Elites. He’s had the England flag stitched onto the instep of his boot as well as some writing on the other side. Also, next to him is one of the soon to be released Nike colourways.

Daniel Baggaley (Brighton High School)- Adidas adiPure SL

Two AdiPure SLs in one post? No way! Probably the most unique boot spot to ever feature on the site, we spotted Daniel Baggaley from Brighton High School wearing the Adidas adiPure SL during the Utah State Championships. The defender is one of only a handful of players we have seen to be wearing the limited edition adiPure SL, which is why we felt the need to include him and his boot choice on the site.

And finally…

Unknown player (Green Gully Cavaliers, VPL U21) – AdiZero Prime Blue/Green/White

Okay, so I don’t have pictures, but it’s a pretty special spot. On Saturday, the left back for Green Gully in their game against Richmond in the VPL U21 wore a brand new pair of the Prime Blue/Green/White AdiZero Prime. As the linesman for the game, I had to stare at his unreleased boots for the first half! And they look great! I have no idea how he got them, but it confirms that this boot might be released pretty soon. We thought the boot might be fake when we first saw it, but it looks like it’s actually a legitimate release! If, by any chance, the left back for Green Gully is reading this, we’d love for you to get in contact with us!

That’s it for our boot spotting today. Even though they may not as be as frequent as they normally are, we’ll always have something to surprise you in our boot spotting articles!

Arsenal & Manchester United Nike Away Kits 11/12

Soccer Reviews have an early release of the away kits Manchester United and Arsenal will be wearing for the 2011/12 season! Although we don’t have all the specs and details yet, we do have high quality images compared to the leaked images you can find.


This new Arsenal badge represents the foundation of the club. It has 15 laurel leaves on the left side reflecting the six pence pieces paid by 15 founding fathers to establish the club. Laurel leaves represent strength.

The oak leaves on the right represent the origins of the club, the 15 founders met in the Royal Oak pub.

Moisture wicking, vented jersey with Dri-FIT technology. 100% polyester.

Moisture wicking, vented jersey with Dri-FIT technology. 100% polyeste r.

Unfortunately we do not have the official specs of both these kits, but we thought we would show you the pictures that we also leaked to you a couple of months ago!

SoccerReviews will post the official release pictures and details in the coming days, so stay tuned!

Skunkies Review

While boots are a great thing, in fact the very things that keep this site running, the odor that so often accompanies them are anything but. Skunkies, a company founded by two ‘Soccer Moms’ set out to eliminate odor in soccer shoes, and sent their products to Soccer Reviews to test out. Thanks to Annemarie McCartney for making this review possible.

For only $5 USD, Skunkies are meant to eliminate odor and absorb moisture, which then helps prevent bacteria from growing inside the boot. We tested the Skunkies out over a period of two months to see if they truly did eliminate odor and absorb moisture, and here is what we’ve decided.

Using a number of different soccer cleats, we tested the Skunkies out over an 8 week period in a number of different conditions. These conditions included boots soaked from training sessions in the rain, used in a very humid environment, and in short, the conditions that make football boots smell horrid. We would then put the Skunkies in before and after the training sessions, and measure the difference from when they were first put in to when we took them out. With three different scented products, there is basically the same outcome with all three of them. There definitely is a difference in the smell of the boots, and whether or not the odor is masked by the scent or if its eliminated, I don’t know, but it certainly does make your boots smell better than they would otherwise. However, in terms of moisture being absorbed, there aren’t any significant changes when you use the Skunkies, so don’t expect your boots to be dry after a torrential downpour. With that said, for only $5 USD, you can have your boots smelling good, and I’d say it’s definitely worth buying, even if they don’t absorb moisture in your boots. The only real con with the Skunkies is that they are very small, and can be pretty hard to find among all of your belongings. So, personally, I prefer to always leave a pair in my bag, because not only do I have an extra pair just in case I can’t find the other, but it also makes the whole bag and its contents smell better as well.

So, definitely go ahead and purchase a pair with your next order. It will only set you back $5 USD, and while they won’t absorb moisture a significant amount, they certainly do make anything they touch smell a whole lot better. You can visit the Skunkies website for more details.


The PEP Talk: Skins Powersox Review

Skins first came to our attention when James picked up one of their long sleeve base layers which he absolutely loved.  Since then we have been lucky enough to be sent a whole bunch of Skins stuff including the Skins Powersox.

Prior to my testing of the Powersox, many of my teammates (including most of the staff here at Soccer Reviews) had been wearing calf compression sleeves from another company, 2XU. I had heard rave reviews of how they were a ‘miracle worker’ and how they had cured all cramping problems but as with any PEP, I was skeptical. The Powersox are designed to improve circulation below your knees, boots muscle endurance and power. The biggest draw for me though was their ability to prevent lactic acid build up, reducing the chance of you getting injured or cramping up. There is tons of technology in these Powersox including Skins very own dynamic gradient compression that basically accelerates your blood flow and delivers more oxygen to your muscles.

My need for the Powersox first came after I had a really bad couple of weeks with cramps limiting my ability to play. I pulled on the Powersox, and although not immediately, the cramps eventually subsided and I haven’t had any since. The Powersox have a nice minimal design that is very low key under your shin guards and football socks. One negative about the design is the stirrup was constantly getting twisted and coming loose. One of the biggest fears I had prior to wearing the Powersox was that they would be uncomfortable and clammy. However, I was proved totally wrong, you hardly notice the Powersox whilst you are wearing them and the wicking technology Skins has used works like a charm. These worked great for getting rid of my cramps but in terms of  improving my muscle endurance and power I really didn’t feel very much change with or without them.

One thing it’s important to take note of  when buying the Powersox is that size essential. Skins uses a unique size chart based on your BMI and each product has a different size chart (You can find the Powersox one here). As we were sent these without trying them out for fit, the full effect probably wasn’t present while we were testing them. Another thing that’s essential in order to maintain the usefulness of your Powersox is that they can only be washed with cold water as hot water will stretch them out and essentially ruin them. Finally, if you’re not willing to spend the $50US that these Powersox cost, then you can very easily find a pair of Adidas calf compression sleeves for something like $15US. However, with Skins I feel you get the best of the best.

The verdict: If you’ve experienced bad calf cramps then seriously consider investing in a pair of Skins Powersox as they truly are a live saver. However, if you’re buying this for their claims of increasing your power and endurance you’ll probably find that they won’t help you all that much.

The Daily Planet: McLeish Joins Villa In Shock Switch

Earlier this week, reports left the Birmingham camp confirming Alex McLeish’s  departure, but already, much to the shock of many Blues’ supporters, the Scottish manager has already pledged his future to Aston Villa, causing fans from both sides to uproar.

Alex McLeish Has Officially Joined Aston Villa

Prior to the last couple days, Aston Villa chief Paul Faulkner claimed there were no front runners in the race to replace Gerard Houllier, but all of a sudden, he was able to confirm McLeish as the new Lions’ boss. Faulkner has acknowledged the anger felt by many fans, but said he holds the belief that McLeish, given time, has the potential to be a popular guy at Villa Park.

“We believe we have appointed the right man for the job.”

“Alex’s vast experience and proven abilities demonstrate clearly that he is a strong leader and an ambitious man and we are looking forward very much to the exciting new season about to start.”

Faulkner made known his fondness of McLeish during the press conference which took place on Thursday night.

“Alex meets the criteria we set out at the beginning of our search which was based on proven Premier League experience, leadership, a hard-working ethic and, most importantly, a shared vision for Aston Villa. Alex is someone with whom we will work closely and work well together.

Alex McLeish

McLeish, now officially Aston Villa’s new man, has revealed his excitement at the possibility of winning new trophies, despite already tasting success with his former club in the Carling Cup.

“I know that some of our fans have voiced concerns and I can understand why. It will be up to me to convince you that I am the right man to drive the club forward and I intend to give absolutely everything to prove that I can be a success at the club.”

“Since first becoming a manager at Motherwell, my desire to succeed and my energy and drive have never waned. My objective is to impart that drive and will to win to the players and fans of Aston Villa.”

Neither club have come out with any official numbers regarding the transfer fee, potential wages or the length of the actual contract, though Villa are expected to release the information in the coming days.

The PEP Talk: The Flex Belt

Players of the Beautiful Game are always trying to gain a competitive edge, whether they employ the use of ion enhancing bracelets, or wear moisture wicking baselayers. The abdominal and core muscles are vital in today’s game, and a new company with a new product feel like they have the latest and best PEP (performance enhancing products) to solve the problem.The company is Flex Belt, and below is their informative video.

According to the Flex Belt website, “The Flex Belt® is the first Ab Belt Toning system cleared by the FDA for Toning, Firming and Strengthening the stomach muscles. With The Flex Belt, you can train your abs even if you’re too busy or too tired for a traditional workout. Just slip on the comfortable toning ab belt and the clinically demonstrated, patented medical-grade technology stimulates the nerves that make your muscles contract and relax. As a result, you get an effective abdominal workout that targets all the muscles in your abdomen – all in just 30 minutes a day.”

While we can’t be sure if the Flex Belt actually works or not, we will be receiving a belt in the near future and will be putting it to the test and will then inform you of the results.

As for now, what do you think of the Flex Belt? Gimmick or not?

Adidas AdiPower Now On Mi Adidas!

SoccerReviews are extremely excited to tell you that the Adidas Adipower is now available for customization on Mi Adidas!

We have anxiously been waiting for this release on Mi Adidas as the Adipower in our opinion is a fantastic looking boot and being able to put your own special touch is great.

I am a huge fan of Mi Adidas as the color and personalization options they give you blow Nike ID away.

Here are some of our creations!

With the release of the new Liverpool Third Kit, I thought I’d make a special design to match that kit!

Here are some other designs;

We had tons of fun customizing, why don’t you have a go! Just click on this link to Mi Adidas’ customizable Adidas adiPower.

5 Ways to Get Through the Football Off-Season

Much to the despair of all the Soccer Reviews writers, football in Europe is officially in the off season. Even though many of us may be counting down the days until the start of the season, Soccer Reviews has found five ways to get your daily football fix to get through the off season.

1. Get into the MLS

Some may laugh at American football (sorry, it’s called soccer over there), but the standard really isn’t that bad. Sure it isn’t the free flowing football of the Premier League, but there’s some real stars playing in the MLS, including Beckham, Donovan and Henry. Plus the goals are pretty special, check out Eric Hassli one in a million volley and Beckham’s texquisite free kick earlier this season.

2. The U21 European Championships

This is pretty much the Euro that we’re going to be watching in around 8 years time. These kids are pretty special, and for once England is actually relatively competitive at a major football tournament! Some of the young guns on show include Man United target David De Gea, whiz kid Xherdan Shaqiri, Man United’s next centre back partnership featuring Phil Jones and Chris Smalling and new Liverpool signing Jordan Henderson. You’ll be watching the future of football right in front of you.

3. The Gold Cup

Surely the US would be a shoe-in to win the Gold Cup right? Well after the disastrous group game against Panama, the competition has been blown open. While many of the countries may not provide overly stiff competition, Mexico vs the USA will definitely be the game to look out for, which will probably be in the final on June the 25th. Put that date down on your calendar.

4. Get into online football games

The days of dodgy internet football games are long gone, they are now more addictive than scoring goals. Jumpers for Goalposts 3 is perhaps the best of the bunch. You virtually work your way at the bottom of English football, then working your way up to the Premier League, picking up cars, publicity and girls along the way. Problem is though that once you start, it’s surprisingly addictive. Zombie Football isn’t as scary as it sounds, but it’s another game that you won’t be able to put down once you start. If you fancy yourself as a manager, I bet Football Manager is probably the closest thing to the real thing. It’s tough, but incredibly enjoyable.

5. Hang around Soccer Reviews!

Well, we had to promote the site somehow! Even though it may be the off season, Soccer Reviews is already looking towards the start of the next season with a flood of reviews along the way as we want to help you with choosing the boot you’ll be wearing next season. Not only that, we’ll have loads of giveaways starting up soon (including the all new Puma V1.11). And even though it may be the off season, get yourself back involved with football by expressing your creativity for Soccer Reviews! I can’t say too much about what we’ve got in mind, but we know loads of our readers would be interested at jumping at a fantastic opportunity that we’ve got lined up. So stick around!

First Impressions: Umbro Stealth Pro II

First Impressions posts are always great as they give an idea of what to expect from the final review, while keeping it short and concise. We were lucky enough to be sent the Umbro Stealth Pro II, and Ben is testing the boots out and you should expect a full review up next week, however he’s worn them enough times to have a basic feel for the boots. Thanks to Pieter Graham for making this review possible!

What you first notice when putting the boots on is how comfortable they are. Umbro have stuck to their reputation and have created another classy boot with a super comfortable upper that instantly molds to the foot. However, as opposed to the Speciali, the Stealth Pro II’s upper is much thicker, meaning there’s more protection, however you sacrifice a better touch and feel for the ball. I personally dislike the thicker upper and would rather have it be slimmed down a little bit, but for no nonsense defenders who enjoy getting stuck in, these are perfect, which is why the likes of Gary Cahill, Phil Jagielka, and a number of others sport the boots.

I was sent the Black/Orange colorway, one that has a mix of a classic black upper with a white logo and a more modern and vibrant orange stripe running along the length of the boot. While many would prefer the original launch colorway with a predominant white upper, gold Umbro logo, and a blue stripe replacing the orange one, it is nice to see traditional black colorways in an increasingly bright football boot market. We hear reports of EPL academy players having to wear black boots until they ‘earn’ colored ones; and for those ‘stuck’ with black boots, why not get a pair with a little bit of color?

The main con I’ve experienced while wearing these boots is in regards to durability. A question that we’ll surely touch base on in three months time is how will these boots last, and the reason I’m focusing on this problem is that already, after only three wears, the boot is separating where the upper and soleplate meet at the toe. While this happens often with boots on astro turf, the Stealth Pro IIs are really showing signs of wear early on, and hopefully they can last.

So far, the boots have turned out to be solid; nothing fancy, nothing really wrong. Sticking to Umbro’s equation for success, Comfort+Value=Quality, the Stealth Pro II so far seems to be an ideal boot choice for defenders and midfielders who do the dirty work for their side. Stay tuned for the full review of the Umbro Stealth Pro II.

Liverpool FC Official 2011-12 Third Kit

Liverpool launched their official third kit on their main website today, much to the delight of hundreds of thousands of anxious supporters. The new kit, which is the first blue and white one since the days before club legend Bill Shankly took over as manager, will be worn by the players featured in Liverpool‘s friendly matches this summer.

Liverpool's Official New Third Kit

Revealed exclusively today on Liverpoolfc.tv, the club’s third choice strip for the new season is white, cyan and black in colour, with the inclusion of cyan blue a throwback to Liverpool’s first ever home kit back in 1892 which incorporated alternate white and blue halves.

With the design inspiration taken from the classic tracksuit tops worn by the famous Liverpool teams of the mid 1980s, this brand new kit presents a modern look whilst giving a nostalgic nod to the club’s illustrious past.

Luis Suarez In The New Kit

Jamie Carragher In The New Liverpool Kit
This stylish new kit is officially launched on Thursday July 14, but you can pre-order today for worldwide launch day delivery.
and change the words that say our club to Liverpool or the club
Andy Carroll In The New Liverpool Kit
Steven Gerrard In The New Liverpool Kit
The playing shirt features the adidas TechFit™ technology which will help improve speed, increased endurance capabilities and enhanced awareness. This works by stabilising and focusing the muscles’ energy to generate explosive acceleration and deliver maximum power output. The replica shirt incorporates adidas Climacool™ technology, a mixture of heat and moisture controlling materials, ventilation channels and 3D fabrics which improve air flow to the skin in the key heat zones.Dirk Kuyt In The New Liverpool Kit
Liverpool have turned the clock back almost 120 years for the inspiration behind their brand new third kit for the 2011-12 Barclays Premier League campaign.