Ryal La Storia Review

Ryal La Storia

A few weeks ago, we featured the Italian brand Ryal and their classically designed boots for the first time. Unfortunately, their boots are not readily available here in the US and I asked you guys to hit up Ryal and let them know you wanted to read a review of their boots on SoccerCleats101. Well, your requests were heard and a pair of the La Storia (as well as a pair of 1976) arrived in for testing soon after. It only takes one look to know what the La Storia is all about. It is a boot inspired and crafted by the history of the Ryal brand, which has been in existence since the 1940s.

But, do they have the chops to be able to stand eye to eye with some already established, classic boots on the market? That is exactly what we set to find out – for testing, I took on a pair in an interesting size, 8.5US. For those interested, they are available to purchase directly from Ryal.nl.

Ryal Tongue

First Impression

What an absolutely classic, old-school appearance these boot have. They look reminiscent of something you would have seen worn in the 1970s or even earlier. The upper is very soft and the inner lining feels fantastic to the touch.

Breaking In

There is not a better word to describe the leather on these than exquisite, and they pass all the tests when you put them on to play. The upper provides a great feel from first wear that only gets better over time. Something to note is that the soleplate is slightly stiff out of the box, so I’d recommend spending a few minutes flexing them before wear. Under the tongue, Ryal use a soft foam that provides an extra soft feel on top of your foot, ideal for you hard hitting players out there. It also takes some of the impact of a hard shot. Another positive area is the ankle lining, where Ryal use an unusual amount of what seems like a foam padding. The squishy feel provides a really smooth fit around your ankle. I did notice, however, that this makes the heel region, closer to the sole, feel a little less protected and I suffered some discomfort starting out. Over time, and as the padding positions itself, it subsides for a very comfortable final product – as I said, they get better over time!

How do they Fit?

First of, I normally wear a size 9US but I went with a size 8.5US to test these. It resulted in a very snug fit. Wearing an 8.5US in most other boots would have resulted in a very uncomfortable fit. But, the inside of these boots is covered in a super soft padding that your foot sinks into, and the K-leather provides extra stretch. As a result, the 8.5US worked out really well. If you want a super snug fit, I would recommend going down a half size but in general I would simply stick with true to size.

Ryal La Storia Logo

Ryal K-Leather Upper

La Storia Studs

Old-School Design

If you have never had the opportunity to own a boot from the 60’s or 70’s, but have dreamt about it, these are the boots for you! It doesn’t really get any more traditional than the design used. The upper is all Black bar some Gold text on the tongue and a signature Ryal stamp on the side of the boot. Realistically, the only contrast comes compliments of the white tipped studs. Even the gold detailing on the upper has been stamped on rather than being stitched like on current day boots!

In-Game Performance

As you can probably tell, there is not a great deal of technology included in these boots and Ryal are not promoting any added performance benefits. Simply put, what you see is what you get. These boots are designed to signify tradition rather than challenge the more advanced boots on the market. If you are 16 or under, you probably won’t appreciate these as much – but ask anyone over the age of 30 and these boots are like a breathe of fresh air. They are the type of boot you put on and forget you are wearing over a 90minute game. In other words, they are comfortable and they don’t interfere with what you are doing.

Another plus was the spread-out stud configuration ensures weight distribution is even and I can report there is no noticeable hotspots. I wore them mostly on Turf and they proved to be a solid option, as was the case when I wore them on natural grass.

Ryal lacing

The Lacing

As is the case with most boots now, they arrived laced – except in a very unusual fashion. Ryal loop the 2nd from top lace back through the top hole, and it creates an all new way to tie your laces. In fact, it actually proved pretty effective, as I was able to wrap the laces over and back around before tying.

Compared to the Market

If I was to place these boots anywhere, it would be right between the Copa Mundial and the Joma Total Fit. They are built with the same quality leather found in the Total Fit, but without the one-piece upper. Instead, they have strategically positioned stitching that creates paneled areas. A lot of people swear by the Copa and place it as the centerpiece of the boot world, the La Storia definitely has qualities that allow it to compete as a leading traditional release but it doesn’t outwit the “Players Choice”.

The Critics Notes

My one issue lay with the feel down along the inside of the heel. I love the padding around the ankle lining, but it just created a hotspot on the bare area below it. If you a fan of technology and boot advancements, these are definitely not the right option for you – but I am sure you have worked that one out already!

Buy Soccer Cleats

The Skinny Summary

Highlight: A tantalizing, old school release that oozes quality with its K-leather upper and unique “from a past era” design.
Category: Heritage – its pretty obvious.
Weight:  A pretty nice 10.5oz, definitely lighter than I would have expected going into the review.
Would I Buy Them: Yes, simply put I love that awesome classic look.
Player Position: This is an absolute defenders boot. It is built to offer a no-nonsense look and defenders to get about their job without any fuss or worry about the important things, like comfort. Then again, if you simply like that old school look, they are not going to let you down!

Ryal La Storia Soccer

4 / 5 stars     
Categories: Cleat reviews, Ryal

About Author

Bryan Byrne

The mastermind behind the revolution that is SoccerCleats101. Bryan started this website back in 2008 and has been testing boots on a daily basis ever since. Check out our About Page for more details on Bryan and the website.

Comments

  1. jesss
    jesss 15 November, 2012, 21:29

    The front stitching reminds me of the adipure IV

    Reply this comment
  2. JMO
    JMO 16 November, 2012, 10:52

    Aaaaah. Really well written review! About the shoe: Nice authentic looks and fabric! Finally a REAL boot who can challenge all that nike/adidas- kiddy color and plastic violence nowadays! Friends are enthusiastic about the boot and shipment. Can't go wrong… think i'm gonna buy this one or the Classico Moro… Brown leather: wow!

    Reply this comment
  3. jimster
    jimster 16 November, 2012, 19:22

    Hey Bryan, great review! I really love the look of these…If I had money I would add them to my growing collection of classic boots.

    BTW, great update here! The experience feels much more streamlined and sleek.

    Reply this comment
  4. MichaelC
    MichaelC 18 November, 2012, 16:32

    Great review. If I wear a Tiempo Legend in 9.5 US as a good fit, what size would I need in these? Thanks.

    Reply this comment
  5. Dorothy
    Dorothy 12 December, 2012, 01:45

    How do they compare to nike legend and adidasadipure?

    Reply this comment
  6. SK
    SK 20 March, 2014, 09:13

    Greetings Bryan-

    I am in LA and just went to great lengths to order Ryal La Storias from an eBay seller in Italy. For those of you outside of the EU, check out Tridente-Sport’s store on eBay. He has a few different models of Ryals in stock, and has very reasonable shipping. I used Google Translate to communicate with him in Italian, and it actually worked. Shoes are being shipped today! http://stores.ebay.com/Tridente-Sport-di-Cola-Fil

    Reply this comment
    • soccercleats101
      soccercleats101 Author 22 March, 2014, 08:36

      Nice – you need to be careful and ensure you are getting official pairs and from a store that will take returns. The only experience I have with Ryal is their primary store, so I can't recommend getting them any other way. Let me know what you think of them once they arrive!

      Reply this comment
      • SK -
        SK - 1 April, 2014, 00:45

        Just received my Ryal La Storias, but I either purchased counterfeits, or the shoes are just of lower quality than the boots in your review. The seller that I posted in my previous post provided a receipt and has 100% feedback rating, but I'm wondering if these are just an older model before Ryal got their quality and craftsmanship in order. I sent a link to @RyalNL and @ardlammertink (owner of Ryal) on Twitter, and he confirmed that these looked legit from the eBay listing. Can you take a look at the video of my unboxing to see if your La Storias have similar materials and look/feel http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WvHbNQ-ly0

        Reply this comment
        • SK -
          SK - 1 April, 2014, 10:52

          After a conversation w/ @ardlammertink who confirmed that these were legit, I've taken down my video. I was paranoid buying from an overseas seller, and also had the expectation that these would have the same materials and finish of my Pantofola d'Oro Picenos. They are very different shoes. My La Storias are from 2011, and Ryal seems to have upgraded the materials for the current version. The seller mentioned that the retail price was €89. The 2014 La Storias are €119, so it would make sense that they may have made significant upgrades in materials. I have no problem with the "handmade" finish. There are lots of small imperfections, but as long as the boots hold together on the field, that is all that matters to me. Now that I've confirmed that these are legit Ryals, I assume that they will have solid durability.

          DIFFERENCES
          For example, my 2011 shoe has a hard rubber AG soleplate. I don't think they offer an AG soleplate anymore. I can't see what the inner liner looks like in your review photos, but mine is lined with padded nylon, which feels like the slick, thin nylon that you would find on a nylon backpack. I believe the 2014 La Storia uses cambrelle, which is a softer-touch fabric. The tongue on my 2011s, which I believe is synthetic, is very thin, soft, light and has a thin felt backing glued to a layer of thin grey foam stitched to the tongue with a fine gauze-like polyester fabric backing on the inner surface that touches your foot. Having actually tried them on, they are extremely comfortable even with no break-in time. I am a bit disappointed by some of the materials that I felt were a bit underwhelming, but I am assuming this has to do with Ryal having made significant improvements in materials used on the La Storia boot between 2011 and 2014. I'll be testing these out in a tournament this weekend, so I'll post a short review shortly! Thanks

          Reply this comment
          • soccercleats101
            soccercleats101 Author 1 April, 2014, 11:20

            Glad you got a response on it – definitely let us know how they work out for you!

          • SK
            SK 14 April, 2014, 13:50

            Tried out my 2011 Ryal La Storia AGs for the first time this weekend. Played in 4 games on artificial turf w/ no break-in prior to the first game. I usually wear a 9 (42), but went a 1/2 size down (41.5) since these are my first k-leather shoes, and I wanted to maximize touch.

            My immediate reaction to receiving the Ryals at unboxing was disappointment, as I was surprised to find synthetic leather used on the heel, lace holes and tongue. However, these things play fantastic. Best touch of any boot I've ever owned.

            I have very wide feet, and dealt with a bit of pain on day 1, but they were definitely more comfortable on day 2. No rips or scrapes. There was very slight separation at the tip of the toe on my shooting foot, but only up to the stitching, which is holding firm. The gold stamping of the logo on the tongue and outside of the boot is already fading, but I like the blackout look, so not a problem to me. Weather was in the low-80s, but I had no problems with heat despite the thin minimalist insoles. I should note that these are the 2011 AG model, which has a natural rubber soleplate with shorter cleats.

            Biggest eye opener wearing the La Storias touch on the ball. These really do feel like a leather slipper. The quality of the leather, fit and lack of frills combine to create a really sweet touch, and I can't wait to play in them again.

          • soccercleats101
            soccercleats101 Author 14 April, 2014, 23:24

            Great feedback – thanks for sharing!

Write a Comment

Your e-mail address will not be published.
Required fields are marked*