I’m not sure what it is, but there is just something about the Adidas Copa Mundial!
Somehow, they have managed to survive the release of several generations of soccer cleats and they continue to be one of the top selling boots on the market. What is even more impressive is the fact that they really have not been updated since their initial release in 1979. For a long time now man of you have been requesting this review, so I decided to bite the bullet and put them through their paces. Currently, I play alongside several players who wear Copas, so I have the added bonus of picking their brains for feedback while putting together this post. For testing, I wore a size 9US.
If you are interested in a pair, they are currently available at soccer.com.
History of the Copa Mundial
There is no doubt that Copas have withstood the test of time. They were released in 1979, but took the spotlight for the first time at the 1982 World Cup in Spain. After 31 years on the market, they are one of the most purchased boots of all time while continuing to sell in high volume.
How do you wear the tongue?
One of the most commonly asked questions about the Copa is “How do you wear the tongue?” The tongue on the Copa is very unique. It is longer than a regular tongue and can be worn in many different ways. Some people like to cut it off where it meets the ankle. Others like to leave it loose, so it sits along the font of the shin. Another way is to tuck it under the cuff of the boot, just above the lace. My preference is to fold it across the top of the boot and use the laces to tie it down. There is no set way to wear it and everyone has their own desired style – either way they look good!
To be honest, the Copa almost feels like a boot that has been broken in before you wear them. It only took one training session for them to feel super comfortable on my feet. In saying that, because of the exceptional leather used, you are going to need a few weeks before they truly mold to your feet. In total, I wore them in one training session and then straight into 3-4 games. Throughout testing they always felt comfortable and well supported on the field. What I find extraordinary is how the soleplate is so basic compared to many of the boots that are currently released on the market – yet they break in so easily!
The Feel of Leather
The Copa is made of a super soft kangaroo leather that just oozes class. I think this is one of the main reasons they have continued to be super popular among players new and old. A lot of brands have drifted towards calf leather or synthetic materials, but the quality of K-leather far exceeds either, especially when it comes to durability. Fact of the matter is players know what they are getting and what can be expected when they order a pair of Copas.
How do they Fit?
Sizing is one of the more important aspects of the boot. I found that I really needed a half size smaller for a perfect fit. I wore a size 9US for testing, but ideally a size 8.5US would have been more suitable. After talking to some fellow players, the consensus seems to be that they fit longer than regular boots. Some players actually went went a full size smaller. If you have a chance to try them on before buying I recommend doing so, but if you are ordering online my general recommendation would be to order down a half size.
Because they were designed and released in 1979, there is not a whole lot of technology that went into the Copas. But what it lacks in technology, it makes up for in quality. The 100% Kangaroo leather upper gives the boot a great feel and last that every type of player can make the most of on the field. One look at the soleplate and you can tell how basic the whole boot is, it has remain basically unchanged since the very first installment was released.
I found the laces to be a little tacky. They are the old school thick laces that you would find on a pair of workman’s boots. Lets be honest, this is a slight negative and can easily be removed by changing the laces out. Although the Copa is a boot built on heritage, I personally prefer the adidas adiPure. The adiPure is an updated version of the Copa and for me it just offers a little more in terms of looks and all around performance. There are no major negatives about the Copa itself – it is a basic boot that offers quality built around 30 years of player testimonials.
What really amazes me about the Copa is how it has managed to stay around for so long. With companies investing millions of dollars a year into developing new boots, Adidas must feel amazingly lucky to have a boot that was designed over 30 years ago selling so well on the market. It means that year in year out they have a boot that they just reap the reward of sales from. It seems to be the 30-40 year old generation that are currently the largest consumers of the soccer cleats, but they also have a strong cult following with younger and older players. If you need a boot that just flat out works – with hundreds of thousands of player testimonials to go along with it – then Copa’s are a great option. They won’t give you the added benefit of super speed or an extra powerful shot (does any boot?) but they will give you quality for what you are buying.