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The best football boots for defenders 2019/20

Stay rock solid at the back and keep attackers at bay in a pair of these innovative football boots.

best football boots for defenders

This post was originally created on 17th October 2018, and has since been updated to include all the latest boots for 2020.

Modern defending involves much more than just lumping it to the other end of the pitch. A good centre-back needs to be quick, agile and comfortable on the ball, with the desire to put his head in when he knows it’s probably going to hurt. It’s one of the most difficult positions to play in, requiring defensive players to consistently throw their bodies on the line as they lunge in to make tackles, blocks and towering headers.

When you’ve been handed so much responsibility, you’re going to need a pair of football boots that help you stay rock solid at the back. So, what are the best boots for defenders in 2020?


1. Nike Tiempo Legend 8

Image from Nike.

This is the perfect football boot for defensive leaders. If you’re a player that likes to set the tempo, maintain the line and ultimately bark orders at everybody else, then look no further than the stunning Nike Tiempo Legend 8. 

Boasting the comfort and durability which has always been synonymous with this silo, the Legend 8 helps you stay calm and composed when on the ball. The traditional k-leather is found across the toe box and upper, while a Quadfit Mesh and Flyknit tunnel wrap around the foot and keep you as snug as a bug. 

This is one of Nike’s oldest boot silos, but the tweaks and upgrades down the years have kept it relevant and popular amongst professionals. The Legend 8 is the most streamlined, comfortable and flexible design to date, with the ridged upper offering a delicate touch and enhanced control of the football. The Tiempo has never looked better.

Who Wears Nike Tiempo?

Virgil van Dijk, Sergio Ramos, Raphael Varane, Thiago Silva, Gerard Pique, Jan Vertonghen, Davinson Sanchez, Chris Smaling, Joe Gomez, Jerome Boateng. 

Top Colourways: 

Nike Tiempo “New Lights” (Blue), Nike Tiempo “Nouveau White” (White), Nike Tiempo “Under the Radar” (Black), Nike Tiempo “Black/White/Volt”.  

2. Puma ONE 5.1 evoKnit

Image from Puma.

The latest generation of Puma ONE offers a real all-rounder. This is a football boot which can be worn just about anywhere on the pitch, built for speed, touch and accuracy all at the same time. 

The upper is extremely thin and light, with a Sprintweb upper ideal for players with explosive pace, while the use of leather and evoKnit ensures the boot also offers a fantastic first-touch and even better comfort. They’re absolutely deadly when worn by certain strikers, but the ONE can be just as impactful when worn by tough-tacklers and surging centre-backs. 

So many boots are built towards one single attribute nowadays, this really is a breath of fresh air which is just as good for amateur players as Premier League stars. I couldn’t really ask any more from a football boot, and this is a fantastic choice for defenders, strikers, five-a-side players and just about everyone else.

Who Wears Puma ONE?

Kalidou Koulibaly, Harry Maguire, Giorgio Chiellini, Diego Godin.

Top Colourways: 

Puma One “Anthem” (Red/Black), Puma One “Rush” (Yellow/Black/White), Puma One “City Pack” (Black/Blue), Puma One “Eclipse” (Black), Puma One “Winterized” (Green).

3. adidas Copa 19.1

Image from adidas.

The adidas Copa 19.1 might have been superseded by the 20.1, but I’d still advise going for the slightly older model. The differences between the two are so slight and insignificant, it’s only really worth paying the extra if you happen to have money to burn. In most cases, unfortunately, money is a valuable commodity, and the 19.1 offers much better value. 

More importantly, this outstanding football boot also provides a cracking performance, offering the kind of innovative tech the Copa has been missing for so long. I’m a bit old-fashioned, so I’ll never like these as much as the iconic Copa Mundial, but there’s simply no arguing that the performance and technology here is truly impressive. 

The premium, wave-like k-leather upper is absolutely gorgeous, for a start, serving up a beautiful touch and helping you stay in control. Just as importantly, the use of Fusionskin prevents excessive water absorption and basically helps you avoid running around in a pair of heavy weights. 

It’s also worth noting that the Copa 19+ (the premium version), offers a lovely laceless upper, but I recommend going for the traditional laces of the 19.1. Not only is this a slightly cheaper option, but it also provides a much more secure fit and, in my opinion, is far more comfortable.

Who Wears adidas Copa?

Cesar Azpilicueta, Mats Hummels, Jordi Alba, David Luiz, Jose Gimenez, Joel Matip, Declan Rice, Daley Blind. 

Top Colourways: 

adidas Copa “Input Code” (White/Gold), adidas Copa “Hard Wired” (Solar Yellow), adidas Copa “Virtuoso” (White/Green), adidas Copa “Dark Script” (Black), adidas Copa “Exhibit” (Black/Yellow).

4. adidas Predator 19.1

Image from adidas.

Modern defenders are now expected to play out from the back, and the adidas Predator is perfect for helping you do exactly that.

Comfortable, flexible, and surprisingly lightweight, this new generation of Predator is a serious upgrade on the older designs. A ControlSkin upper keeps the ball firmly stuck to your feet, while the flexible PrimeKnit SockFit collar and moulded heel offer a more comfortable fit. Of course, they’re also built to match the pinpoint precision offered by Predators of old.

Comfortable, stable, and now available in all-red, the adidas Predator is a great option for defenders that like to get on the ball more. Phil Jones is wearing these at the moment- but don’t let that put you off!

Who Wears adidas Predator?

Aymeric Laporte, Nacho, Yerry Mina, Fabinho, Sven Bender, Eliaquim Mangala. 

Top Colourways:

adidas Predator “Encryption Code” (Green Camo), adidas Predator “Hard Wired” (Blue), adidas Predator “Exhibit” (Dark Blue), adidas Predator “Dark Script” (Black), adidas Predator “Input Code” (Gold), adidas Predator “Virtuoso” (White).

5. Puma King

Image from Puma.

Reliable. Durable. Consistent. The Puma King has always optimised what great defenders are all about. These classic football boots are famous for their comfort out on the pitch, with premium leather materials keeping your feet nice and snug as you dive in to win the ball back. 

They might not feature the same cutting-edge features or impressive boot tech as newer, more advanced models, but that doesn’t mean the King is incapable of doing a job at the back. Defenders need to be calm, assured and confident while on the ball, and the lack of any bells and whistles means the King boasts all those qualities in abundance. 

These aren’t boots for flashy wingers or tricky midfielders, they’re for sturdier, more solid players who want to shore things up and essentially get on with things. The premium leather has always been incredibly comfortable and still offers a great touch, making it one of the best football boots for defenders for the past 40 years.

Who Wears Puma King?

Hector Bellerin has been known to wear the upgraded Puma King Platinum, but these boots are now rarely seen in the professional game.

Top Colourways:

There is only one Puma King colourway worth your time, the classic black and white model. 


If you’re hoping to find a pair of cheap football boots to keep you solid at the back, then make sure to compare prices right here at FOOTY.COM. We find you the best deals on all the boots listed above, as well as an enormous range of other models, silos and colourways!

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