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Which adidas football boot is best for you? [Guide]

Are you a midfield magician or a lethal striker? Here's your guide to which adidas football boot is best for you!

adidas football boots 2020

This post was originally created on 11th November 2017, and has since been updated to include all the latest and greatest football boots adidas has to offer.

adidas need no introduction. In the football boot world they are one of the cornerstones, with a storied past decorated by many of the greatest players to ever play the game. To this day the brand boasts none other than Lionel Messi as their poster boy, and there are no signs of adidas being stuck in the past either as they continue to innovate in all areas.

In years gone by pitches were graced by the likes of the F50, ACE, Nitrocharger and 11Pro, but in 2020 the adidas stable boasts a refined mix of boot silos featuring both classic names and fresh upstarts. The Predator is perhaps the most famous of the bunch, and since it’s triumphant return a few years ago we’ve seen a plethora of new designs including a dedicated range from world champion Paul Pogba. You’ll also find the recently renovated Nemeziz, a boot favoured by the aforementioned Messi ever since its original launch.

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Perhaps the most up and coming option is the X, a boot whose popularity has rocketed thanks to a certain Egyptian forward who plies his trade in the red half of Merseyside. And if Mo Salah’s footwear wasn’t on your radar you’ve probably heard of the Copa, which like the Nemeziz has recently been completely reworked and is now sported by players such as Paulo Dybala.

So how on earth do you choose between all these options? Do certain boots favour particular positions or styles of play? Which boots have the best available colourways?

This guide is all about sorting fact from fiction and giving you all the tools you need to find out which adidas football boot is best for you.

What boots do adidas make?

As already discussed adidas offer a number of different boots to suit players of all types at every level of the footballing pyramid.

Their 4 main offerings are the Predator, the X, the Nemeziz and the Copa. The Predator is probably the most well-known name, but each silo can be found on the feet of many professional players. There are particular focuses for the different boots (which we’ll detail below), though ultimately all the boots have a degree of versatility about them. The great news is you’ll also find various tiers for each of the boots, meaning that there are affordable options to suit every budget.

The buck doesn’t stop here though; adidas also sell classic models which are particularly good for those who enjoy the old-school, classic look and feel of black leather boots. Look out for the Copa Mundial and Kaiser 5 if this takes your fancy. You’ll find these often categorised as, understandably, adidas Classics.

Let’s break down these boots further and look at the subtle unique characteristics of each option.

adidas Predator

Image by adidas.

Who wears adidas Predator boots?

Paul Pogba, Fabinho, Dele Alli, Mesut Özil, Marc-André ter Stegen, Ivan Rakitić

Models available now

19+, 19.1, 19.2, 19.3, 19.4, 18+, 18.1, 18.2, 18.3, 18.4, Predator Precision, Predator Archive, Predator Mania, Predator Accelerator

Newest colourways

Legacy Green / Sand (Encryption Pack), Bright Cyan / Core Black (Hard Wired Pack), Silver / Core Black (302 Redirect Pack), Core Black / Core Black (Dark Script Pack)

What type of players is the Predator for?

The Predator is quite simply one of the most famous boots of all time, across any brand. For anyone who grew up watching football in the late 90s and 00s it’ll forever be associated with legends like Zinedine Zidane and David Beckham. adidas themselves have capitalised on the aura of these classic players, with stunning rereleases of some of the most popular historical colourways.

But the Predator is not just a boot that looks back. After a brief hiatus between 2015-2017 it returned to much fanfare, and since then it has solidified its position as one of the leading lights in adidas’ present-day catalogue.

Though the silo was historically favoured by wingers and attacking midfielders, the post-2017 Predator has seen more of a shift towards midfield creators deeper on the pitch. It’s only a subtle change, but current wearers like Paul Pogba and Fabinho highlight exactly what the new target demographic of the silo is.

Technology of the adidas Predator

Control is the name of the game, with features like Controlskin which helps players to keep the ball as close as possible to the feet before executing a killer pass. The attacking heritage of the Predator isn’t completely lost (and players like Dele Alli testament to that), but this is very much a boot that’s perfect for those who like to dictate play in the middle of the field.

There are also a number of elements of the boot which help make it one of the most comfortable in the game. A lightweight Primeknit upper wraps around the foot, providing support for the full 90 minutes, and Boost cushioning adds further support in all areas.

Customising your adidas Predator boots

The Predator is available in a laceless version (19+, 18+) as well as more traditional laced versions (19.1, 19.2 etc.). Both are worn by the pros, so it really comes down to personal preference as to whether you prefer the slightly more streamlined touch of the laceless, or the tighter feel of the laced editions. In terms of available colourways, you’ll find everything from a timeless blackout pair, to a camo-inspired look and even a vibrant cyan edition. In many ways you can pair your style of play with a particular combination of shades, if that’s your thing.

Though this is a close-to-perfect boot for midfielders, don’t worry if you want a pair of Predators but play outside the middle of the park. The qualities and features of the boot lend themselves to pretty much any position; just look at someone like Barcelona keeper Marc-André ter Stegen, who wears Preds between the sticks to great effect.

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adidas X

Image by adidas.

Who wears adidas X boots?

Mohamed Salah, Matthijs De Ligt, N’Golo Kante, Son Heung-Min, Jamie Vardy, Daniel James

Models available now

19+, 19.1, 19.2, 19.3, 19.4, 18+, 18.1, 18.2, 18.3, 18.4, 17+ Purespeed, 17.1, 17.2, 17.3, 17.4, 16.1, 16.2, 16.4, 15.1, 15.3

Newest colourways

Legacy Green / Solar Orange (Encryption Pack), Bright Cyan / Core Black (Hard Wired Pack), Silver / Hi-Res Red (302 Redirect Pack), Core Black / Utility Black (Shadow Beast Pack), Core Black / Gold (Inner Game Pack)

What type of players is the X for?

It’s been just 5 years since the adidas X burst onto the scene, and since then the spiritual successor to the popular F50 has been building a strong reputation of its own. As a name the X doesn’t carry the same weight as a boot like the Predator, but by contrast you could argue that the calibre of player that wears the X is a step above.

No one exemplifies this more than Egypt and Liverpool superstar Mohamed Salah. The increasingly decorated forward is the perfect billboard for the X; a boot that is primarily built for speed and finishing. Indeed the X was Salah’s weapon of choice during his season as the Premier League Golden Boot winner.

Technology of the adidas X

From a features perspective, one of the things that stands out the most is the Skeletalweave upper. The lightweight, ultra-thin grid of woven yarns is engineered for pure speed and a deft touch, giving players that extra edge when it matters most.

Another extra boost is received from the Ultralight Speedframe, which is tailored to provide maximum acceleration for players. On the soleplate of the adidas X, a combination of arrowhead and round heel studs grants wearers those crucial extra few inches in a race with a defender.

Speaking of defenders however, one interesting development has seen the adoption of the adidas X by a growing number of defensive players. It’s an interesting trend which speaks both to the changing responsibilities of the modern defender, and the versatility of the X as an all-rounder boot (despite its attack-minded feature set). To give two examples, Juventus centre-back Matthijs De Ligt has been wearing the X in 2020, alongside midfield maestro N’Golo Kante.

Customising your adidas X boots

The adidas X, like the Predator before it, can be found in laceless (19+, 18+, 17+, 16+) and laced. (19.1, 19.2 etc.). Once again the choice between the two comes down largely to personal preference, though it’s worth noting that the laced version is typically seen more at professional level. Still, with both versions you’re getting the same quality technology and all the trimmings. There are plentiful colour options for the X, with a blackout version, a range of more flamboyant combos and a classy black, gold and blue edition.

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adidas Nemeziz

Image by adidas.

Who wears adidas Nemeziz boots?

Lionel Messi, Bernardo Silva, Roberto Firmino, Moise Kean, Jesse Lingard

Models available now

19+, 19.1, 19.2, 19.3, 19.4, 18+, 18.1, 18.2, 18.3, 18.4, 17+ 360 Agility, 17.1, 17.2, 17.3, 17.4

Newest colourways

Grey / Solar Orange (Encryption Pack), Shock Pink / Core Black (Hard Wired Pack), Active Red / Silver (302 Redirect Pack), Core Black / Core Black (Shadow Beast Pack), Football Blue / Cloud White (Inner Game Pack)

What type of players is the Nemeziz for?

It might sound overly simplistic, but when the GOAT wears your boots is there really anything left to say? Messi has been the poster boy for the Nemeziz ever since it’s launch in 2017, and as a result the momentum behind the silo continues to grow each season. World class players like Roberto Firmino and Bernardo Silva are two other notable members of the Nemeziz roster, and following a redesign last year there are few boots which are making more of a push heading into 2020.

Technology of the adidas Nemeziz

The typical Nemeziz wearer is, as you’d expect, attack minded. Unlike the X which focuses particularly on finishing, the Nemeziz looks to double down on improving a player’s agility. This is most visible in the already iconic Agility Bandage technology, which has been designed for complete mobility in all directions when moving at pace. adidas used sports taping as inspiration for the technology, producing a unique look which stands out in the often homogenous world of boots.

You could say that the Nemeziz sits neatly between the profile of the Predator and the X, as a boot which suits creative attacking midfielders and number 10s especially. Alongside Agility Bandage, Agility Weave is used at the forefront of the boot, providing a responsive touch that’s perfect for players as they glide across the pitch.

Customising your adidas Nemeziz boots

As you’d expect you can buy both laceless Nemeziz and laced Nemeziz, though in this case we’d lean towards the laceless version if we had to choose between the two. Unlike many boots the Nemeziz was built with laceless in mind from the get-go, and the 2019 redesign has only emphasised that. From a colour perspective there is plenty to like, and there are a particularly bold selection of colours headlined by the bright pink Hard Wired Pack edition. The combination of the ‘disruptive’ look of the boot itself and the colours on show provide one of the most eye-catching sets of footwear you could find on the pitch.

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adidas Copa

Image by adidas.

Who wears adidas Copa boots?

Paulo Dybala, João Félix, Juan Cuadrado, Lorenzo Insigne, David de Gea

Models available now

20+, 20.1, 20.2, 20.3, 20.4, 19+, 19.1, 19.2, 19.3, 19.4, 18.1, 18.2, 18.3, 18.4, 17.1, 17.2, 17.3, 17.4

Newest colourways

Silver / Silver(Encryption Pack), Core Black / Core Black (Shadow Beast Pack)

What type of players is the Copa for?

The Copa has had quite a journey. Owing its name to the legendary Copa Mundial, the boot enjoyed a reputation as a no-nonsense boot for many years. Despite its popularity amongst Sunday league players though, adidas decided to break the wheel and pitch the boot towards the higher end of the market. In late 2018, the Copa was reborn and the course of the silo changed significantly as a result.

Technology of the adidas Copa

Some key elements of the historical Copa were retained, most notably the extensive use of premium leather, but from an aesthetic perspective everything was reworked. A striking, wavy seamless look was introduced, and this was more than just eye candy. The Fusionskin surface (which turns “leather into a technology”) was made less permeable, providing a cleaner contact zone in all conditions and giving the boot an edge over it’s synthetic competition. Unlike previous versions of the Copa, the redesign was made available in a laceless version. You won’t find a tongue on the new Copa either, a rare find for a leather boot.

From a player perspective there are only a handful of players who make use of the Copa on the biggest stage. Don’t let that put you off though, if it’s good enough for Paulo Dybala it’s good enough for anyone. Given the versatile technology and benefits from a comfort perspective, this is a boot that makes sense for players at every position. Colour wise you’ll also typically find more understated options for the Copa in comparison to some of the other silos, with a predominantly silver edition and a blackout pair as the two most recent colour updates. Older versions of the boot offer more colour choices, though of course if you’re going for anything pre-2018 you’ll be getting the older design of the boot.

The Copa is an exciting, fresh option which will likely gain more and more popularity as time goes on. In 2017 you’d be more likely to referees wearing a pair instead of a player, so the rapid development since then bodes well for the silo’s future.

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adidas Classics

With a brand as storied as adidas, it’s no surprise that you can find old-school boots available alongside the main four silos. No matter how much technology may develop, there’s something to be said for a pair of black and white staples. If anything, classic boots often say a lot about a player. If you turn up to Sunday League in a pair of fancy, flashy, neon green numbers you’re a marked man. An understated pair of boots by contrast can fly under the radar to great effect.

The two most popular classic adidas boots are the Copa Mundial and the Kaiser 5. Both of these boots are remarkably similar in aesthetic, with some users reporting that the Kaiser was marginally more durable and others saying the Copa offers superior touch. Whichever route you go down though, you’re getting a dependable pair of footwear which will likely last you for as long as you need. If you’re shopping for either of these boots, look out for the “adidas Classics” category.

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Whichever boots you decide to go for, you’re in very capable hands with adidas. Their constant developments in the world of boot technology and their regular colour updates means there is always something for players at any time of the year.

And talking of times of the year, you are of course covered for multiple surface types with football boots for everything from firm ground to soft ground, artificial ground, astroturf and indoor surfaces.

For the full range of adidas football boots you’re already in the right place here at FOOTY.COM. We compare prices on every boot on the market, so you can play more, pay less.

Phil Delves

Grab a brew, and let's talk about subliminal geometric patterns.