Center Midfield – As we all now, finding the right pair of soccer cleats is paramount to ensuring that you perform at the highest level come kick-off. Each playing position is going to have specific boots that are more suited than others. So, in our Best Cleats by Position series, we take a look at what boots suit the needs of each playing position on the soccer pitch.
Playing center midfield means one thing – you need to have a solid engine room and a fully functional 360 degree radar! You also need a soccer cleat you can rely on for comfort and all around performance, so that you can tackle, pass, shoot and get up and down the field. There are three different styled players you will find in midfield; the protector (Gennaro Gattuso, Xabi Alonso), the midfield general (Steven Gerard, Sebastien Schweinsteiger) and the creator (Andres Iniesta, Andrea Pirlo). When it comes to the needs of a midfielder, the essential requirements in a suitable cleat are:
- Touch – When the ball comes to a midfielder, he must already know what he is going to do with it. This of course means first touch is crucial, particularly when you are in tight corners with players closing in around you.
- Comfort – Since the midfielder is constantly moving up and down the field, a comfortable cleat is crucial to ensure he is ready to give 100% come game time.
- Control – Being able to control the ball on your foot and play it where you intend is the difference between a good and great midfielder. The ball arrives at your foot and you instinctively want to play that killer ball – a boot that works with you is essential.
#1 – Adidas adiPure 11Pro (read review)
The adiPure 11Pro is the all-around best soccer cleat on the market. You are getting a boot that has something to offer every position on the field, and since the center midfielder has several different roles the adiPure seems like the perfect counterpart. There is no nonsense behind the adiPure, it is simply a well crafted k-leather soccer cleat that consistently delivers – something we have seen throughout the five series of the range. Having tested them, I can tell you they perform exceptionally well on the field and are very responsive to how you move throughout a game. Finally, one of the finer parts of the adiPure is the price with Adidas giving it an initial retail price of $150, which is affordable compared to some of the other crazy priced cleats on the market.
Check out the current available selection of adiPure 11Pro– original retail of $190.
#2 – Nike CTR360 Maestri II (read review)
When players like Andres Iniesta and Gennaro Gattuso swear by the same boot, you know there has to be something special about it! Designed with the playmaker in mind, the CTR360 Maestri is developed to enhance the attacking prowess of any midfielder. If you need that extra something to top up your game look no further! The highlight of the release is the strategically placed pass and receive pads Nike has developed, designed with the purpose of enhancing touch and control. I thoroughly enjoyed wearing them as a winger during testing and can see how the could be hugely beneficial to any midfielder who likes to be playmaker. Finally, when it comes to design, I find the CTR360 Maestri II to be very appealing.
Check out the current available selection of CTR360 Maestri – original retail of $190.
#3 – Adidas adiPower Predator (read review)
The Predator range is essentially a cleat designed for the set piece specialist, but they have so much to offer midfielders. If you like to strike long balls then the adiPower Predator is going to suit your game. Steven Gerard is the perfect example of a center midfielder who the Predator match, a midfield general who is not afraid to work hard for 90+ minutes and can really strike a ball when needed! You also have confidence in knowing the ball will stick to your foot as you control a long ball played to you. One of the added advantages to wearing the adiPower Predator range, in my opinion, is that the Predator Element adds protection for the top of your foot, making them ideal for players who like to get stuck in.
Check out the current available selection of adiPower Predator – original retail of $200.
#4 – Umbro Geometra Pro (read review)
I am definitely a big fan of what the Umbro Geometra has to offer players in game. It is designed to tackle the Control/Playmaker category, with plenty of technology added to compliment a fully functional K-leather upper. The one area of this boot that stands out is the ECZ, or Energy Control Zone. This is a padded region that sits along the instep and it makes for a fantastic addition, particularly when you go to take long passes out of the air. In fact, it is the best piece of technology I have seen added along that region of any boot on the market! The concept of padding the region makes complete sense, and Umbro employ a Teijin medial pad with memory foam to do so.
Check out the current available selection of Geometra Pro – original retail of $180.
Please note that these boots are suggestions based on our experience of playing and testing these boots. There are sure to bo other options, and we encourage you to share your thoughts on what other boots could be added below.