As every keeper knows, there are several key factors when determining the right glove to buy and go with. After all, once that glove is selected, the bond should be like that of an Avatar and its horse or flying creature—super strong and to the death. A keeper’s glove can be the difference between feeling confident and feeling like you have grease all over your fingers. Also, whether we say it or not, unless you have a glove sponsor who produces unattractive gloves, we all want to look dashing in goal!
I believe the key factors in reviewing a glove are these, in no particular order:
- How they feel on your hand during training/a match
- Grip, under all conditions
I am going to try and write the reviews as if a young man or lady was reading, keeping it very simple and straight-forward. No one is going to understand if I begin going on about the foam being made in Taiwan but developed in Germany but processed in a micro-fiber plant in Bangladesh. I want the reader, you, to feel as though you have the gloves right there in front of you, so your decision and knowledge about the glove is as good as it will get without clicking buy or handing the cashier your card!
This review will cover the Adidas Predator Pro ClimaProof. I was actually very excited to test these gloves out, especially since Adidas is such a high-class brand and the likes of Casillas, Cech and Neuer all wear Adidas! However, let me also note that I think in Adidas gloves I wear an 11, not a 10 and that somewhat affected the fit and testing of the gloves.
Find the Adidas Predator Pro ClimaProof at soccer.com.
#1 – The look
The look of the gloves is pretty awesome. Although I am a Bruin and bleed blue, the red backhand really is strong, giving the glove an intense look. The spackled dots are also something I am a fan of. Adidas has done a great job of making their gloves, especially the predator line, stand out. I love the charcoal and black in contrast with the red, as well. The most striking feature about the look, however, is the palm. The frizzled and wavy-lined palm is definitely something unique to the glove. I actually really tend to like solid color palms, but these got to me. The lined palm make training and playing in the gloves somewhat entertaining, and definitely give the gloves a different sense of style.
Overall, I would give the look a solid 7.5/10.
#2 – The Cut
The cut of the gloves is “flat-palm,” which basically means the palm is a single piece of latex connected to the backhand by gussets, or essentially thicker stitching. The fingers are slightly rounded at the top, which I do not mind, and that usually comes down to preference of glove type.
Cut gets a 7/10.
#3 – The Durability
The gloves proved to be pretty durable. Given that they are meant for nice, wet conditions, training in sunny So Cal took the gloves out of their element. I was impressed that their was not much rippage or tarnishing of the palm or fingers after several training sessions! However, I would always recommend trying to keep nice gloves like this off of older field turf as much as possible, as no matter how durable they seem to be, the evil turf monster will always win!
The durability gets a 7.5/10.
#4 – The Feel
How they felt on my hand is where things get tricky. So usually, I am a 10 in gloves. However, this pair was, shall I say, much too tight! These gloves have an inner lining that feels like an expensive winter coat, and is almost fuzzy in its texture. Adidas says that the gloves is “100% water resistant,” so I am assuming that this lining is to keep your hand dry and relatively warm in cold, damp conditions. However, I probably disliked this aspect the most. Even though it was obviously small, I could barely get my hand into the glove. The lining provided a huge problem when trying to fit my fingers into the glove. I had a fellow goalkeeper with smaller hands try his luck as well, and even he had trouble with the pinkies getting snugly in—the lining would get twisted or caught up and he could not get all the way in. Once on, however, the gloves felt snug and I did feel as though my hand would be pretty dry during a wet match.
However, the lining also made the ball slightly more difficult to feel, and I do not like that! I give this a 3/10.
#5 – The Grip
Lastly, the grip. I will say the ball stuck to my hands when fielding shots and volleys. My fellow goalkeeper also said, given that the gloves fit him a bit better, that the grip was really solid. I dumped some water on the palms as well to simulate a wet game, and the gloves lived up to their hype.
Grip gets an 8/10.
Overall, I think I would probably be ok wearing these gloves, but only in a wet game. Being confident in your glove in wet and slippery conditions is huge for a goalkeeper’s psyche and confidence. One thing I did not mention as well is the wrist strap, which I wanted to touch on. I am not a fan of the super long, “stretch-wrap” wrist strap that the gloves have. I feel it makes the wrist area too bulky and confusing. However, given that the gloves are made for wet games and training, I think they would prove useful if purchased.
Would I go out of my way to buy them? No, absolutely not. However, if they were for some reason all I had, and they were the right size, I would be ok using them in a match. The gloves get a 6.5/10 overall, mostly due to their bad inner lining and wrist strap!
Right now, you can find the Adidas Predator Pro ClimaProof at soccer.com.
Remember, we did not choose the glove life…the glove life chose us!