Over the past 2 years, something is quite apparent about Under Armour – they are a company that is not holding back with their releases! Making a statement with bold releases can be hit or miss, and be the difference between a company making it or folding. Under Armour are really starting to grasp a piece of the market with releases that push the boundaries. The Blur Pro features a very unique looking upper and a new stud configuration to produce a boot that offers excellent traction and acceleration. Everything about them screams “ideal boot for a winger”, but the real question is did they improve my already consistent game? (note the modesty!) For review, I have been testing a pair of size 9.5US in the Metallic Silver/Velocity/Black colorway.
Finding the Right Size
Right out of the box, I faced the size challenge! The Under Armour Blur definitely fits slightly tighter than your regular boot and sort of mimics a Puma fit. After testing out the initial size 9US in a jogging session, I quickly realized that I would need a half size up. You also won’t get much stretch out of the microfiber upper. Unless you normally fit small in your size, I advise going up a half size.
I will start by saying that when I tried jogging in the size 9US, I experienced a lot of discomfort in the heel, if this is something you notice you will need to go up a half size! Having resolved my sizing issue, I can confidently tell you that the Blur offers a smooth break in. The soleplate was slightly stiff around the midfoot starting out, but after a jogging session it easily loosened up. The inside of the boot is well padded and offers a snug fit that keeps your feet tight to the boot. One area where UA excel is in their use of a 4D foam insert – it offers fantastic cushion and really becomes apparent as you land off each stride. This is something UA transitioned effectively from their American football boots to real football boots (good opportunity to get that one in!)
Whats with the Design?
It is tough to skip over how crazy the upper of the Blur looks. In a sense, the look compliments their name! That Metallic Silver upper is a lightweight microfiber that has been perforated along the sides for extra ventilation and breathability. Basically, little air holes have been cut from the outer layer. In a weird way, they remind me of a cheese grater! There is also a very vibrant Capri/Fusion (exclusive to Eurosport) and a more modest Black/Bolt colorway available.
4D Foam Insert
This is something I pointed out in the breaking in section, but the insert used by UA is worth highlighting again! Taking it out of the boot, it is thicker than normal inserts and offers a very spongy and responsive feel. Personally, it is one aspect of the boot that I am glad UA included!
UA highly focus on the Directional stability provided by the soleplate. It is designed so that the foot remains on the chassis of the outsole during 360 degree movements in-game. This includes starting, stopping, cutting, escaping, and full-on attacking. I like UA’s approach with this, and how they emphasize the fact that there is more to a game than just running in a straight line. You can definitely tell there is something different about the blades by just looking at them. Each blade sits lower than you see on other releases and has been rounded.
Having got this far in the review, I am sure you are still wondering how they suited my game, right? Well, they are the perfect accompaniment to quick players who like to buzz around the field. The stud configuration serves its intended purpose on turf and natural surfaces. I do have some reservations when it comes to wet conditions, where traction is a little more hit and miss. But for the most part, I thoroughly enjoyed them in-game. Breaking down the very unusual upper, you get a very smooth and responsive microfiber that is very easy to clean – but when it comes to control, you do lose out compared to a leather upper. There is nothing about the region that allows the ball to really stick other than the responsive cushioning it offers. This is a pretty familiar scenario across synthetic uppers – but the upside is the durability factor, and you will get a substantial life from the Blur (pending you take care of them of course!)
Overall, the Blur is 90% of the way to being a top performing boot. There are no major negatives to report, only minor issues that will vary according to different player experiences. I found the traction was slightly off in wet condition, the upper has no control feature that would allow the ball to stick and I am not a fan of how the perforation along the sides of the upper looks.
This is Under Armour’s fourth release/installment on the soccer market – and it is apparent that they are quickly adapting to the needs of the everyday player. At 8.6oz, this boot is light, offers solid comfort and a specifically designed stud configuration that attracts player attention. If you like the design and are on the market for a boot that offers something a little different, look no further! In terms of player position, I highly recommend them as an option for wingers and quick forwards, while playmakers might also want to give them a test run. I have no doubt they would also suit many other players on the field, but not so much if you are looking for something that has been engineered for a specific player. My last piece of advice is to re-read the sizing section, ensure you get it right and you will love these boots!
With an original retail price of $198, but you can get the Blur Pro for $144 at the moment.
(*boots supplied for review by Under Armour Soccer)