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Best football boots for coaches and referees

Respect is all coaches and referees ask for. Your outfit is part of the formula, and we’ve picked out the best boots to help you stamp your authority.

copa mundial football boot on black background with best football boots for coaches and referees title

Giving serious direction to players whilst wearing anything other than black football boots will, inevitably, get you laughed off both pitch and training ground. There’s a reason why top coaches and referees choose this colour; it shows experience and demands respect from the off.

Dish out your best Collina stare or transfer Klopp-level knowledge after grabbing a pair from our list of quality black boots.

adidas Copa Mundial

Image from adidas.

Alright, let’s just get this one out of the way. Everyone knows the Copa Mundial and its close neighbour the Kaiser 5 are quintessential referee and coach gear. Pure dark K-leather, white detailing and extreme slipper-like comfort. Dishing out cards and yelling tactics have never looked so good.  

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Mizuno Morelia Neo 3

Image from Mizuno.

Mizuno may not be the first brand you think of when it comes to refereeing and coaching, but let this be known: they make one hell of a comfortable boot. Its mix of supple K-leather, mesh and Barefoot Knit collar give it a maximum lockdown feel. Built primarily as a lightweight model, they’ll have you rising well above the red mist that surrounds you in the middle.  

Nike Premier II

Image from Nike.

The Nike Premier II’s hint of Chile Red stitching and Dark Smoke Grey on the Swoosh is just enough to show people you’re in charge, but you’ve got personality too. Soft kangaroo leather atop the moulded full-length TPU soleplate means that 90 minutes, extra time and penalties won’t be causing any issues for you.  

Umbro Speciali 98 Pro

Image from Umbro.

A heritage brand with an absolute heritage boot. Umbro Speciali have been worshipped for decades by coaches and referees in every top league across the world. The white sole gives off flashes in transit, whilst the padded upper and heel hug the feet. In these, you can be Kim Milton Nielsen sending Becks off in ‘98, or you can be the distraught onwatching Glenn Hoddle.

adidas Predator Mutator 20.1

Image from adidas.

They’re a bit flashier than the usual, so what? You’re the one in charge of everyone anyway. For a ref, the Demonskin upper is a little useless. This doesn’t stop the Mutator being a durable, comfortable and sleek piece of equipment to wear. Maybe those spikes can be a warning for players not to mess about?

Puma King Top di

Image from Puma.

Another vintage beauty makes the list, the Puma King Top di is a legendary choice for refs and coaches. Plush bubbled leather with the inimitable white stripe and tongue combo, it’s the perfect match for the authoritarian in black. Touch and feel won’t be a worry either, for those coaches who’re dreading the demo in the control and turn drill… 

Nike Tiempo Legend 8 Elite

Image from Nike.

The Tiempo has always been for players who demand touch and feel, this usually means the boot is about as plush as they come. It’s certainly true for this Tiempo Legend. Everything about this is stylish and classy, helping you to be that very thing in training or in the game. Quad-fit mesh, FlyKnit tongue, premium K-leather; this boot has everything you need, just don’t forget your cards!

Pantofola d’Oro Lazzarini

Image from Pantofola d'Oro.

Why Pantofolo d’Oro never sponsored Pierluigi Collina, we’ll never understand. They were made for each other. Both Italian, both had finesse, both were smooth on top. Mike Dean is never getting away with a pair of these, but there’s a good chance you’re going to. Warning: people will be constantly asking you what they are and where they’re from.

Kevan Thorpe

Quintessential grassroots journeyman. I've had more "you look like Gareth Barry" comments than I have career goals.