Wednesday , April 17 2024

Nike Tiempo Legend III Review

Placing the word ‘Legend’ in the name of a soccer cleat has to give some added pressure to its release on the market. You need to be sure it is a high quality cleat that offers something players want. Previous releases of the Nike Tiempo Legend have hit that line of expectation, but where does the latest release fall? The Nike Tiempo Legend III hit the market last spring, with the likes of Carlos Tevez, Cesc Fabregas and James Milner sporting them on release. This review might be coming a few months later than expected, but better late than never, right?

As a guide to what to expect from these cleats, I would place them in the same category as Adidas adiPURE’s and Lotto Stadio Primato. After having an opportunity to wear them in several training sessions and 2 games, here is what I thought of them.

Search for pairs of Nike Tiempo Legend III.

Breaking In

A lot of friends I spoke to about the Tiempo Legend III during testing, describe them as fitting ‘true to size’. I can’t say that I agree with this statement! I normally wear a size 9, and that is what I wore for this review. In the initial week of testing, these felt very tight, and almost like they were a half size too small. If you have a wide foot, you might want to order a half size up, that is what I will do with any future releases in the range. This caused some uncomfortable before I was eventually able to deem them as ‘broken in’! Thankfully,  I didn’t experience any blisters even though they were tight. After a few practice sessions, they did loosen up, although I don’t think I ever felt like they truly fit. If you are a fan of a glove like fit, these are a great choice! I ended up wearing these in 3-4 training sessions and 2 games, which was all I needed to get a good feel for the fit!

Nike Tiempo Legend III Cleats


Nike chose to modify the design slightly from the Legend II to this latest release. The Legend III has a much darker look, but a twist to the sole. Black is the theme on the upper and Nike have taken away most of the white trim. The sole adds a real pop to the cleat, although the only one that will really notice is the defender you leave trailing behind you! Nike has added a bright illuminated yellow color to the very unique blade/stud combo. Other than that, you are getting a clean looking design that doesn’t scream ‘look at me’! One thing I do really like about the sole is where ‘TIEMPO est. 1984’ is inscribed at the forefront. In my opinions, this adds a touch of class to the boot and gives it more of a heritage!

Performance and Durability

The upper of the Tiempo Legend III is made of a super soft Kangaroo leather that offers great durability when broken in. I have to admit that initially, these felt a little stiff compared to other K-leather cleats in its bracket, but with time this breaks down giving you a lasting boot. Again, like with other Nike releases, I love the insert that is used. It doesn’t move, and it feels great to run on. The sole of the cleat has been split into two, allowing it to have great flexibility. Add this to the forefoot flex grooves, and these feel great to move and turn in. I am also a big fan of how Nike use a mix of conical shaped studs and blades. There are 8 conical at the front of the cleat, and 4 blades at the back. This makes these ideal for artificial surfaces and firm ground.

Nike Tiempo Legend III sideCritics Notes

Other than the size issue, there are no real negatives about the Tiempo Legend III. The fit was a little too snug for me personally and I would have liked a half size larger than I normally wear. Again, I am going to complain about the length of the laces, but I am starting to come to terms with the fact that this is something that many of the big companies are sticking with! One other thing that I wanted to mention is the overlapping tongue. I love the design, but I am not confident in the Velcro used to keep it down. After a few training’s, this started to come loose, and I found myself pushing the tongue back down during the game!

Overall, you are getting a quality boot with the Nike Tiempo Legend III. I am not fully persuaded that these are cleats that will be remembered as ‘Legends’, but again that is only a title and of course my opinion! If you are on the market for a no-nonsense cleat that will give you great support and performance at a decent price, these might be ideal for you. In terms of position, they are a hybrid that are pretty much suited to any player on the field that wants to try them out. I would recommend trying a pair of these on before buying if possible, especially if you have a medium to wide foot like I have!

(boots supplied for review by

Nike Tiempo Legend III Running

About 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.

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  1. How's the overall grip of the mixed outsole. It seems like it has both blade and conical stud qualities. Some people say blades sometimes offer TOO much grip and for me conical, not enough.

  2. how do they compare to the adipure 2/3?

    I just got the adi pue 2 and it is a little too loose around the heel, but I ordered a half size too big.

  3. Eugene,

    I am surprised that more companies have not moved towards using a mix of both, the benefit is that it is easy to twist when you are moving forward, and the blades are great for gripping the surface when you are stopping. It makes sense to me!


    These fit tighter than the adiPURE's, esp in the heel as Nike have re-engineered the design. They might be a better option than the adiPURE's for you!

  4. great tip. I might consider buying them in a few seasons, but with vapor V's, a pair of adipures and some kelme master infinito's I don't really have the desire to buy yet another cleat.

  5. I ordered a pair of legends and and i have them in 9.5 . they fit perfect but I need to have some growing room. I was wondering if the fit between the 9.5 and the 10 would have much of a difference? Thanks.

  6. Hi!

    I bought a pair of these cleats, but 1 have a big problem. I had Tiempo Legend II previously, and they grow a lot, so some months later the cleats went a half size bigger. Therefore when I bought the Legend III cleats, i bought a half size smaller, thinking that the similar thing will happen. But unfortunately it has not happened yet, so i need some advice, how can I make these cleats grow bigger.

    I heard differend ways, wearing them and walking in hot water in the bath, etc. Whats your oppinion, what can I do with them, cause I cannot take them back to shop?

    • pour some water, a cup of bleach, a cup of vinegar and they will approximately grow half a size bigger..

    • always put something inside the shoe and push into the end of shoe. U just splash it with some water before use it. Let make it a little bit wet so that the leather will grow and follow your foot.

  7. I've owned legends prior to adipures (which i will stick with). I found the k leather on legends are a little more durable imo than the adipures, but that might be where the slight difference in weight is…SCAVY: If you want to break them in well, youre right, wear them in warm water for 10-15 minutes with your game socks and an extra pair, then wear them afterwards until they are dry, then add leather food. But dont assume them to be fully broken in yet….wear them at practice for half the session…jog and juggle with them a few times and you should be set…sometimes heading right into a match with new cleats stresses them to quick and they rip.

  8. Just wondering, but would these good for a full/wingback?

  9. Kyle,

    They would be suitable for wingbacks, they are a pretty well rounded boot that fit a broad range of players.

  10. Hey Brian

    For your problem with the lace cover, I found that by tying the laces over/behind the cover, the Velcro keeps the cover down and therefore it doesn't make the cover come up and they are not as tight up top. If you need a visual, look at Marcus Tulio Tanaka of Japan(on

    Hope this helps

  11. Good call Jake! I actually started doing the same thing with the Lotto Stadio's, I never tried it with the Legends, but this is very useful info for the person that wins the boots in our giveaway!

  12. Hi

    Great review

    Look I need a new pair of boots to play mostly on good long artificial grass but sometimes in bad quality artificial grass too.

    I'm afraid that the cleats may cause discomfort in artificial grass.

    Can you give me your opinion?

    Do you think these boots in that cleat option will be a good buy for me?

    Thank you


    Cheers from Portugal

  13. Eduardo,

    The best solution for artificial surfaces are turf cleats that are suitable for the good and the bad. But these should also be a suitable solution. They would be fine in terms of comfort, but some people complain of getting injuries in studs due the nature of how the dig into the surface.

  14. Serginho Bertoli - B

    Eduardo… if i can give you a hint, this one have a version in "AG" outsole… especially designed to artifical grass… maybe be more indicated for the use that you're looking for'…

  15. I know there is an option with and Artificial grass outsole but they are sold out here.

    I wanted to know If with this outsole "Fg" i could play it on artificial grass without losing comfort

  16. Serginho Bertoli - B

    I don't think that option the best choice… for sinthetic grass i'd choose turf (or TT) shoes…

  17. hi Bryan In terms of durability and quality would you say these are some of the best on the market and would you recommend any others

  18. I think these are overlooked…ive used these as well as the adipureIIIs exstensively. It may just be the shape of my foot but i feel more secure in the legends…Don't get my wrong the adipures are supercomfy and have more k leather than the legends….But i like this boot more overall. PUYOL!!!!!

  19. John (Argentina9

    Well…here are my questions:
    – If a buy the Tiempo Legend III, I should buy them with size 7 1/2 US, because the kangaroo leather stretch??? But…wath about my wide foots? Should I get the same size anyway or a size bigger?? Because I don´t want to have my foot knot and after some time, break the cleat.
    – I like the boot as close to my foot as possible. I like boots that gives you the best feel of the ball (“glove-like fit” it calls??). I like the boot that stays firm to my foot. I’m not a massive fan of having room at the end of the boot: So..wich one should I buy, Legend or Maestri?

    I´m sorry that Im making all this questions. But, its impossible to me to try this cleats on. Because here, in Argentina (where I live), “Nike Football Argentina” don´t sell this cleats. Tiempo Classic and Mystic.
    Ohh…sorry for my english, too.

    Thank you very much!!

    • Tiempo classic has more softer leather on it. But Legend III is not gonna really stretch. I think you better buy the same size of u. Just try wear at both foot in Nike Shop then only decide. If u try 8 (US) Tiempo classic, and u feel OK with it, mean u better choose 8 (US) for the Legend III. Tiempo Classic is little big long and softer but legend 3 is more tighter and great! I got 3 boots, Adidas predator – Silver (W Cup 2002 Adriano)- for soft field, Puma (cheap one for training purpose), Nike Legend III soft and medium field.

  20. John-

    I own the legends in size 9. I am not a solid size 9, i'm in between that and a 9.25. I broke them in by the "bathtub" method and they felt good after some jogging/training. The k leather on these are pretty much just the forefront of the foot…to be honest i wasnt impressed with nike because of the lack of k leather…but when this boot breaks in, like bryan said you will have a solid, lasting boot.

    hope that helps

  21. John (Argentina)

    Thank you very much, bwizzle!!. Thank you for the help 🙂

  22. did you ever do a review on the tiempo legend II and if u did are they similar to the legendIII. 1 more question, im an outside midfielder and i would like to know which cleats will be better for me, the adipure or the tiempo. both second version not third.

  23. what do you mean by lack of k-leather and the 'bathtub method." can you explain?

  24. Brad,

    I haven't reviewed the Tiempo II, but I have tried them and they were very similar. Personally, I preferred the adiPure II, I think the adiPure range offers a little more quality, but both a re very suitable for outside players.

  25. So if the nike legends II and III are very similar what do you meen by "Previous releases of the Nike Tiempo Legend have hit that line of expectation"? does that meen the new versions havent? I am asking because i foud a very good deal on a pair of new tiempo legend II for $80 at my local soccer store and i was wondering if i should buy those as oppose to the legend III and the adipue III. Can i have your opinion on which of those cleats is the best buy? Thanks

    O, if this may influence your dicision i am usualy a midfielder and i prefer the outside midfield.

  26. jozef-

    If you look in the pictures bryan provided, you'll see that nike used a different fabric. Right above the swoosh symbol and a little below it too…If you could hold the boot up and take a solid look at it, you could see where the textures are different. The kleather is where it should be for the most part, like in the forefront of the foot… This is a great boot, and is my go-to boot. But i was a little unhappy when they came in the mail with less kleather than i thought they would.

  27. Jozef-

    The "bathtub" method is used by some to help shape the leather to their foot. Basically you stand in warm water for 10-15 minutes, then wear the boots for a few hours or until theyre somewhat dry.

    Some people do this and some would never try it….

    works for me….

  28. thanks bwizzle ill try the bathtub method and your right, i can see a difference in texture. Thanks for your help.

  29. Bryan,

    are the legend III realy not comfertable? I was interested in buying them but with a 7.5 in comfort i dont think im interested. also, are the legend II more comfertable than the legend III? which would you prefer?

  30. Connor,

    Problem lies in the actual sizing, they fit slightly narrow and a little small. If you can work out the correct size you could prob bump the comfort upto a 9!

  31. Hey Bryan,

    I had purchased a pair of the Adidas F50i Tunits, and the stud changes were quite annoying and it already has a big rip on the outside of the right boot. 🙁

    I am looking for a more durable, good performance cleat that isn't too flashy like the Nike Mercurials. I have Tiempo indoor shoes and they are great, but I was also looking at the AdiPure boot as well. Which boot, the AdiPures, or the Tiempo Legend III, would you recommend? Especially for durability. 🙂

  32. thanks for the advice bryan and i think ill go for them because i have a narrow foot.

  33. i have another question about breaking in the tiempo or any leather cleat, is the "bathtub method" an effictive way to break them in? if not, what is a good way?

  34. reviews are awsome bryan! 🙂

  35. Connor,

    The bathtub (or shower) method is effective for k-leather boots, when breaking them in. The best way to break in a pair is to simply walk around in them, then break them into some jogging before wearing them in a game. The important thing is to take your time with every new pair!

  36. What boot do you prefer, the Adipure 3 or the Tiempo Legend 3?

  37. thanks bryan!I appreciate it 🙂

  38. Hey, I was wondering if anybody could tell me how the Tiempo Legend III compare to the Adipure III in terms of durability?

  39. Hey Brian, I wear a size 7.5 Nike Tiempo Ronaldinho's I have wide feet would buying a size 8 in Tiempo III's be a good idea?

  40. Can you tell about the nike tiempo classic lite

  41. Hi. I am 16 and either play rb or lb and was wondering if you though nike legend III or Nike maserti CTR's would be a better boot for a defender?

  42. GG,

    Both are good options for defenders and I have seen defenders wear both. My personal opinion is that the Legends might be a better option considering the CTR360 Maestri is designed for playmakers.

  43. Hey Bryan, I've looked at some different shoes and i'm still not sure what I want. Originally I was after a pair of synthetic cleats but after trying on a pair of f50s I hated them. They just don't offer that true to touch experience that kangaroo leather gives with it's snug fit. It seems you had some problems with sizing but other then that these are a good pair of cleats. My question to you is should I go for these or the Adipures? I heard these have a larger strike zone but I've never actually seen them. My second question is do they have same "amount" of k leather as the Adipures? (All around and thickness.) I play striker, and outside midfield a lot, (and occasionally center mid/center d but not often). I have a tighter budget then before (because of the holidays,) and i'm sill using the same cleats that I used during my normal season which are falling apart.

  44. what is the closest cleat compared to the nike tiempos ?

  45. Joshua and Elias,

    The adipure is the most similar boot to the Tiempos on the market. They are both built around the same design and have a similar shape. The Tiempos fit slightly smaller than the adipures do.

  46. hey bryan you think you could do a review on the legend elites? i really enjoy your reviews but i have been unable to find many reviews on them and i am thinking about purchasing them thanks, jack

  47. hey i play center mid and im wondering if im better off with these for the good control aspect or the laser 3s for shooting, please let me know asap

  48. Drew,

    I think you answered your own question! If you prefer control go for the Legend III but if you prefer to shoot go for the Lasers. It all depends on your style of play.

  49. any word on a upgrade of these? have been wearing them for the past season but need a new pair in the coming season. was just wondering if i should wait for and new release.

  50. So Bryan, you've reviewed the T90 Laser Elites, The CTR360 Maestri Elites, and the Mercurial

    Vapor Superfly, or Superflies, I'm not sure… Anyway, do you think it's time for a Tiempo Elite review? I think yes.

  51. @Brian,

    You might be right – let me see if I can get my hands on a pair!

  52. Hi Bryan!

    Can you PLEASE do a tiempo elite review?

    And don´t comare the elites with the legends like you did with T90 because I´m considering of getting some tiempo elites and therefore I want to se comfort and stuff like that 😀

  53. Bryan,

    The reason why those seemed so small was that the first edition of the legend III(black/volt) did run a half size small. i had them in a size 10.5 and a pair of the newer black/white/gold legend III in 10 and measured them. Exact same size. Also, the leather on mine still hasn't fully broken in. any tips?


  54. I’ve always thought the tongue on these made them look cheap, and they always seemed stiffer than their copa/adipure counterparts.

  55. I think you should do another review of these. Even just walk into the store and try some on, because I do believe there is a problem with the earlier versions of the Nike Tiempo III. I tried the Black/Gold ones on today in my size and couldn't even get the boot on. I then tried the White/Green ones and they were actually quite comfortable. Even wider than the Laser 3 in the toe and metatarsal area, but with a lower toe box. I think you might find these boots are better than your initial review.

  56. Hi Bryan,
    A while back i wore a pair of ronaldinho nike tiempo dois fg. Personally these were m favourite boots i have owned. These boots look similar. How do you think they compare?
    Thank you!

    • They do offer a similar fit and since they are designed from the same line (Tiempo) you will find the performance is very much on par!

  57. If im a size 9 in adizeros's should i order 9.5
    for these?

  58. Should a cleat for a defender be tighter or more loose? Like will it make a difference in control and touch?

    • Players usually look for a more snug fit as it allows for better feel on the ball, but the key is ensuring that your boots are not too tight – you don't want to blister!

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