Finally, the review you have been waiting for, the Adidas adizero! First off, I have to tell you that I was extremely skeptical going into this review. After testing several other speed boots (Nike Superfly and Puma V1.10), there was one question on my mind: “How bad are these going to blister my feet considering how light they are?” The one thing I have learned is that taking away materials produces a less comfortable boot, primarily because whats left behind is a skeleton frame designed to rub against your heels and toes! But what you will be surprised to hear is that things are a little different when it comes to the adizero! Adidas have truly pulled out all the stops in creating a boot that just downright destroys it competitors in terms of lightweight releases!
The following review is for the synthetic firm ground version in the range, with the Leather and Hybrid reviews also available. For testing, I wore a size 9US in the Sea of Yellow, Black/Sun/Metallic Silver colorway.
Does the adizero actually feel lighter?
Without having to think about it the answer is “YES.” When I took these out of the box for the first time they blew my mind! It is absolutely astounding how light these feel. I have to admit that I am normally skeptical of lightweight boots, and have stated that I never really notice a difference in terms of weight, but the adizero completely changed my opinion. They are light in your hands and light on your feet!
One of the most surprising things about the adizero is actually the ease with which they break in. The boot comes with 2 different inserts, a lightweight and a comfort. My first piece of advice is to start off by using the comfort version. There is only a slight difference weight wise in both versions, and the comfort version will offer more protection for your fit as you try to break these in. I only had to wear these in one training session before they were ready to be used in a game, exactly what I did not expect! So far I have used them in 3 games, and they have performed extremely well. I did start to feel some slight discomfort on my heels, but after simply applying a band-aid, it never became an issue. All-in-all, I have worn them in 3-4 training sessions and 3 games with very positive results.
To recap: If you have the right size (like I did) you should not experience too many problems breaking these in. Make sure to start out using the comfort insert.
Sizing is an area that I usually stay away from, but I think it will be particularly effective to compare my sizing to the F50i and Superfly ranges for comparison. I have read several comments from people who state the adizero fits a half size bigger. My opinion is not such. I normally wear a size 9, and for testing the adizero I wore a size 9 that fit absolutely true to size length wise. Now, the one area that these are a little different is in width. Compared to the F50i (which I am currently reviewing) or the Nike Superfly II, the adizero fits a little wider and it has a lot more give. One of the biggest contributing factors to this is the fact that the materials used in the boot are so much thinner, giving you that extra bit of space for maneuverability.
My advice: If you fit pretty close to the tip of the toe in a size, go with that exact size. But if you normally have a decent amount of room in a size (about the width of one finger) order a half size down.
What makes this boot super light is the use of Sprintskin, a single layer synthetic that allows Adidas to dramatically reduce the weight. The material is literally as thin as a few sheets of paper! Adidas also use innovative internal TPU support bands inside the Sprintframe (the gray ladder design inside the boot.) It is basically designed to provide additional support and strength to the walls of the cleat. Another area where Adidas have placed additional research is in the stud configuration. The design is completely different to anything else on the market, especially since the studs are a triangular shape! Adidas state that the design helps improve speed when you push off the ground.
A few months back when I saw the prototypes of the adizero range I was not impressed. They seemed to look very square and minimalist. I was particularly put off by the designs used. But after having these for a few weeks, my reaction is completely different. Actually having the boots in your hands gives them a very different look, especially the Messi Chameleon version. No picture actually does the design justice. The soleplate of each version looks very minimal, especially since the only change is the stud color. I personally like this aspect as it shows Adidas have placed higher value on performance instead of how the boot looks. One of the more unique aspects of the cleat lies on the heel, where Adidas have replaced the regular wide grooved heel with a much smaller, yet extremely comfortable, thumb heel design. By thumb heel design I mean it literally is a thumb width in size and it extends slightly higher on your heel than it normally would. I like this part of the design as it gives that extra bit of material to keep the boot close to your foot, without adding any extra pressure in the region.
This is one of the few reviews where I have limited negatives to report. I found the adizero lives up to expectations. For a lightweight boot, they offer great comfort and support. In saying this, there is no doubt that like any other lightweight boot out there these will not suit certain players and will cause certain discomfort. This is just part and parcel of what you can expect from a speed boot that has less material/paddding, and of course it all really depends on the player. If I do notice any negatives over the coming weeks I will update this section.
Adidas really have stepped it up with this release. I was highly skeptical going into testing, but all I have are positives to report about the adizero. The look good on, and feel pretty good to wear. It amazes me how Adidas are able to produce something that weighs under 6oz. Even after you read this, you will be astounded at how light they are. And the best part about it is that Adidas have priced these at a pretty decent $200! Considering the market, and what you are getting with these, that is a reasonable price. In terms of position, if you feel like you need a lightweight boot then these might be the best option out there! To be honest, they might not be suitable for defenders who like to get stuck in as they really don’t offer a great deal of protection. This also goes for hard-hitting midfielders. When you are creating a boot for a player of the caliber of Lionel Messi you really have to get it right, and fulfill their exact needs. In my opinion, that is exactly what Adidas have done with these.
(*boots supplied for review by soccer.com)