The Ctr360 Maestri III is one of the most popular boots on the market right now. Adidas’ Predator LZ is a close competitor but Nike have been in the control boot game much longer than adidas so there is ground that needs to be made up between the two companies. I’ve had the pleasure of testing out the mid-tier Predator LZ absolion already and now that it is time to see if the Trequartista III measures up. Even in the mid-tier catagory the approach to control boots that each company takes is quite apparent. I can also now see why some pros have opted for the Trequartista III!
For testing I’ve gotten the Trequartista III in a size 9.5 in the Black/ Photo Blue/ Pink Flash/ White colorway. I’ve put it through 12 games on turf and a 3 practice sessions on very swampy grass. Overall the boots threw me curve balls and surprises at several points throughout testing. I connected with them quite quickly and was able to go through testing smoothly because they fit my style of play to a T.
Out of the box they give a very professional first impression. I don’t quite feel like they are on par with other mid-tier boots, even the Nike Veloce doesn’t even get close to touching the Trequartista in terms of quality. It has been appealing enough to make an impact on some professionals as well who have opted for custom pairs of Trequartista!
The colorway is also rather nice as well, low profile with a pop of color starting halfway down the boot. It is as if the designer didn’t know what target market to go for, the people who like the quieter colorways or those who like the more “in your face” approach. I find the color mash up to be quite appealing. The over all apperance and feel of the boot gives it a high-end vibe, it matches up closely with top end model. There are plenty of other colorway options right now but this has to be my favorite out of them.
Tech Included, Compared to Maestri I II
The technology Nike have included in the Trequartista III match up pretty well with what we have seen in Trequartistas past when compared to their individual top tier models. The Trequartista III include the same Kanga-lite upper we see on the Maestri II, but it more closely resembles the next generation Kanga lite we see on the Maestri III bar the ACC coating. This impression is due to the stitching and dimpling in the upper which greatly increases the feel and behavior of the Kangalite. We also see a very similar but slightly toned down series of control pods on the instep, there are no fins but it is still effective. There is also a small padded area under the tongue which adds to comfort and give it some protection. They have even included a Poron insert under the heel which we don’t see in the Maestri III. The Masetri III has additions that add to comfort such as a more padding around the ankle as well as a few performance enhancements. Overall they aren’t all that different from the top tier, however they vary just enough to justify spending the extra cash for the Maestri.
Break In and Comfort
Break in time was unusual as well as unexpected and it took around 5 games with the only “break in discomfort” being in the first 15 minutes of each game. Initially I thought they would take a short break in period and as it turned out they were comfortable after fifteen minutes of cramping at the start of the first game. It seems like my expectations were met but as it turns out I was wrong. For the first 5 games I experienced cramping for the 15 minutes at the start of each game just as I had in the first game. Thankfully after the fifth game the cramping had subsided completely. I’ve concluded that either I was tying them too tight or they just needed time to stretch out and contour to my feet. However there was no blistering or discomfort otherwise.
After the break in the Trequartista are pretty comfortable. The stitching included on an already flexible upper coupled with the Poron insert under the insole makes this boot quite comfortable, even the pad under the tongue added to comfort. No issues past the break in time which I suspect my vary in duration and symptoms with each player.
How They Fit
They fit a little on the narrow side, they really hugged the contours of my feet which I personally love. Based on reader feedback I heard that they can also fit wider feet. Length wise they fit like any other Nike cleat, I’m usually a 9.5 in Nike and that is just what I got. It did seem like they were a bit on the small side of life starting off but I think they stretched out a bit. If you want to double check to ensure you are getting the right size I would use the shoefitr app which can be found on soccer.com or Soccerpro.com, I’ve found it to be %100 accurate.
Performance and Durability
The performance benefits are well worth the time it takes for them to break in. I can only think of a few times where I got a bad touch out of them. The level of touch they give is fantastic even with the pass pods. The amount of control the give is pretty surprising, I can see why they are so popular. The lateral side of the forefoot has these neat dimples that really help take hold of the ball when it is played on the ground or even taking it out of the air. The pass pods located on the instep really grip the ball as it makes contact when being on the giving or receiving end of a pass. Shooting with them results in a satisfying “ping”. After testing I went back into my trusty Bomba Finale (I’m very excited for the Bomba II by the way!) and I kept getting bad touches! I was quite surprised, I had gotten so used to the touch and control of the Trequartista III that even the Bomba seemed clumsy in comparison. The Trequartista truly is a control boot!
Another area of performance that really stood out was traction. I used them almost specifically on turf throughout testing and I never once felt like I was in danger of slipping or snagging. At this point they are one of the only pair of FG cleats I will even consider using on turf! I still feel more comfortable in a pair of turfs on turf though, I don’t want to risk ligament damage after all. Bryan ran into discomfort with this particular stud configuration but I ran into none. Only quality traction, but not “advanced” traction.
So far there are no glaring durability issues. I can’t even begin to guess which component of the boot is going to give me issues first. No separation, no abrasions in the upper, no nothing. Just some minor scuffing on the black part of the upper and pass pods. I’ll keep you guys updated however as I continue use. But since they have been mainly used on turf and aren’t showing signs of damage really I feel like they’ll last a good while.
The major negative for the Trequartista is the break in time. It was rather awkward, I both looked forward to using them but dreaded the initial fifteen minutes of discomfort. I would suggest putting them on a bit before the game to warm them up a bit, maybe even invest in a pair of cleatskins and take laps around the house. Another negative is the scuffing but it comes naturally with use, especially on turf. Something else that bugged me is the fact that I felt like there wasn’t enough room for my toes initially, they are a bit snug starting off. There is also an area of the bottom of the soleplate below where the base of the big toe would be that is slightly bulged out. It is noticeable when cleaning but not in game so it is more strange than an issue.
It will be hard for any mid-tier boot to impress me more than the Trequartista III has! That statement sums up the Trequartista III pretty well. Their quality pretty much surpasses every mid-tier cleat I’ve encountered thus far, they even out shine a few top tiers as well! The Adidas Absolion don’t quite measure up in terms of quality, as far as performance goes they offer a different experience as well. Despite the strange break in experience I found my time in them pretty enjoyable. The positives far outweigh the negatives after it is all said and done. There is still room for improvement though, otherwise they wouldn’t have the Maestri III which I’m going to start saving up for! The Trequarista III are worth the $94.99 price tag.
Technology Efficiency: 83%
Total Score: 79%
Boot Provided for review by WeGotSoccer where they are available for $75.99 – $85.49