Wednesday , February 28 2024

Nike Premier Review

Nike Premier vs Tiempo

For many players, wearing classic and traditional styled boots is the only way to go. For a long time, the Adidas Copa Mundial has been the mainstay when it comes to classically inspired boots, while it has been an area that Nike has sort of avoided by sticking with more modern feels.

Then they dropped this latest gem of a release – the Nike Premier.  This is a boot that features a timeless inspired look with a whole lot of modern technology. On paper, it seems to be a rather ingenious move by the home of the swoosh and since they were unveiled to the market, there has been a steady wave of positive comments geared toward them from fans. I’ve had the boots for a few weeks and here is how they have performed.

Interested in a pair, they are currently available at for a pretty awesome $99.99.

Introduced to the Market

From concept, Nike worked with the idea of creating a high performing, timeless classic that would be would be available to consumers for less than $100. It is not directly implied, but the boot is intended to be a direct competitor to the Adidas Copa Mundial, with the more modern nature of the Premier giving it a fresh edge.

Nike Premier side profile

Nike Premier Soleplate and Stud Configuration

Breaking In and Comfort

This really is a delicious release from Nike that will have players drooling over the comfort they offer right out of the box. Everything about the boot is created with a little extra flexibility in mind and that translates as you put them on and jog for the first time. One area that really stands out is the soleplate, which bends extremely easily and really syncs with your foot movements without being too floppy. It creates a very natural feel and players will definitely appreciate the efforts Nike has taken in developing it.

The upper is also buttery soft and you will find they offer a nice touch on the ball right away. A major benefit is the fact that there is no technology included in the upper, so the minimal leather design simply provides a uniform ride with old-school performance. If comfort ends up being an issue for any player out there, please let us know in the comment section below as we would love to know how other players experiences compare to ours.

New School Performance

Don’t be fooled by the extremely simple, traditional look of the Premier – Nike has gone to extreme lengths in producing a boot that is as modern as it comes in terms of technology. We have found out since their release that a lot of research went into the production of the boots, with the intent of finalizing a product that would stand the test of time on the market. There are several different areas of the boot that they have worked on and the following are the ones worth pointing out.

No. 1 – Touch – what is with the upper?

First and foremost is the leather upper that Nike use. In order to downsize the weight of the boot, they have gone with an ultra thin layer of material. The end result is a buttery soft upper that really molds to your foot shape effectively. When you can pinch the leather and feel it fold right to the brink, you know that it is pretty special. We still don’t know the exact type of leather used by Nike, with many some reports it is K-Leather and others touting a goat leather. The one thing we do know is that the entire upper is created using natural leather, something that is quite rare for companies to do with new releases these days.

[Also See: Nike Premier – What Does it Mean For The Tiempo Legend?]

No. 2 – Traction and Stud Configuration

Another key area for Nike is the development of a new soleplate and stud configuration. Lets start by talking about the conical studs and the lower profile design. Each of the 12 studs located on the sole has been trimmed in both length and width. This provides a lower center of gravity with a quicker release from the surface as you push off to sprint. In the center forefoot, a slightly more oval shaped stud has been added. This has the dual functionality of being a brake stud as well as an added source of traction for releasing from the surface. I found the design to be effective, especially when it came to playing on artificial surfaces. The configuration provides the ability to penetrate the surface without causing any drag.

No. 3 – The Soleplate

This is the real winner on this boot, in my opinion. Rather than creating a hinge design, where the boot bends immediately under the toes, Nike has produced a more uniform flex through the entire forefoot. In other words, the bend is gradual and provides support right through the foot movement. Being honest, these boots seem to be designed for more mature players who have been playing the game for a long time. We are talking about the 30+ demographic here, and these are the players that will end up buying the boots. Thus, the concept of creating a much more comfortable bending motion is a master stroke by Nike as the more mature player relies more on comfort than that initial burst of speed. In hand, the boot folds very easily right back into a 180 degree position!

Nike Premier Back Studs

Soft Leather upper - Nike Premier

Nike Premier Swoosh

Wrap Around Swoosh

In order to truly develop a unique final product, Nike has added a wrap around swoosh the goes from one side of the boots and around the heel to the other side. The real boot connoisseurs out there will spot this one and appreciate the style it adds to the boot. Along the heel, Nike has embossed the text “EST. 1972”.

Keeping Things Simple With the Tongue

Rather than fighting against the fold over design Adidas owns, Nike has cut the tongue off at the ankle and solved the “what should you do with the tongue” dilemma! On the under side, they place a suede material that adds some extra grip against your socks, and they have included a layer of additional padding through the center. It doesn’t add a lot of value, but any additional help to protect in heavy tackles in duly appreciated!

How do they Fit?

This is an area where people have relayed different feedback. I tried a pair that were true to size and a pair that were listed a half size up and I have to say that the half size up felt more comfortable. There really isn’t a great deal of extra room in the boot and they seem to provide a sort of Tiempo Legend sizing to them. If I had gone with the true to size pair, I am sure they would have stretched somewhat over time and maybe that would have made a difference. But, I am all about finding the right size out of the box and I know more traditional players will appreciate that extra level of immediate comfort out of the box. My recommendation is to definitely consider going up a half size on this one.

Nike Premier Tongue

Nike Premier Leather Upper

Nike Premier Upper

Copa adiPure Compared

Compared to the Copa Mundial

These boots are a serious contender compared to the extremely popular and highly regarded Copa Mundial. The Copa is really seen to be the godfather of boots and I can’t remember any other boot that has ever challenged that title. Nike has taken the right approach with these and I really do think their emphasis on creating a super affordable shoe that offers high performance will pay off. Plus, they have hinted at the fact that this is a boot designed to stand the test of time on the market. In other words, it is here to stay with no impending modifications required.

[Also See: Adidas Copa Mundial Review]

Under $100

I’m going to go out on a limb here and state that there isn’t a better boot on the market at this price point right now. Everything about these oozes quality and they are going to really satisfy the traditional player who seeks a simple, uncomplicated boot. It was Nike’s goal to keep the price under $100, something they can do since there will be no big endorsement to go along with the release and there won’t be a team developing the next version. The hard work has been done in creating the boot – now they simply have to gain a following and sell through word of mouth.

Critics Notes

There is not a great deal I can fault about these and it is pretty obvious that Nike has been extremely cautious with their approach to the final product. It is a design that should pay dividends over time. The one thing I do want to note is that I feel like this is a boot that could gain a lot from some key player endorsements. There are a lot of pro players that could easily benefit from what they have to offer. But that is not going to happen, unless of course certain players sport them without direct endorsement deals in place.

Nike Premier Firm Ground

Nike Premier

A Final Personal Note

These boots truly are a stroke of genius and the timing of the release is perfect. For such a long time, the Adidas Copa Mundial has been the tradition players boot of choice and we have been preoccupied with modern highly glamorous releases. Each brand seemed to be fighting the lightweight war, until Nike walked in with these. Although the Copa fan will state that “Adidas has nothing to be worried about”, I really think they have something to be concerned about. Everything about this release appeals to the more modern player who wants a traditional design. And I have a feeling that older players will appreciate the fact that they look like a mature players boot but weigh in nearly 3oz lighter than the Copa. No matter what your stance is on weight, 3oz on both feet over 90 minutes is a big deal! My advice to Adidas would be to find a way to modify the Copa without losing too much of its 1970’s suave appeal.

Interested in a pair, they are available at for a pretty awesome $99.99.

The Skinny Summary

Highlight: Nike has tackled the heritage market with this no-nonsense, very modern and technologically advanced, traditionalist boot.
Category: Pure heritage, as you might have noticed from the design.
Weight: A cool 8.6oz that is right in my “perfection” range.
Would I Buy Them: In a heartbeat and I will be recommending these boots to a lot of players. The quality they provide for their price is exceptional.
Player Position: Rather than being a specific position, this one lies with a playing style. If you want something traditional, that offers modern performance and a simple final product, these are a solid option to consider.

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. Nice review. I don't think Adidas should touch the Copa, though. Sure, it's not perfect, but it is what it is. When the time comes I'm not sure if I'll get the Premier or another pair of Copas, but I do know that for someone my age (26) and those who are older, the romanticism of the Copa does matter. I can remember a time not all that long ago when the Copa wasn't just a "great classic boot", but a great boot…period, that competed directly with the modern releases of the time all the way up until the early 2000's. To a large portion of the target market, I think that really does matter. For so many, the Copa was the first "nice" boot that we ever had. And sure that floppy fold over tongue might be annoying and dated, but it's the signature of the Copa.

    That being said, I am super glad Nike came out with the Premier and it's a very attractive boot. Probably much more attractive than the Copa when only considering the tangibles. The intangibles, however, go to the Copa. I'm pretty torn on which I will go for next, but that's not a bad thing.

  2. I bought my pair two weeks ago (true to size). They are ridiculously comfortable. They are almost TOO comfortable. They feel like a leather sock or what I imagine a ballet slipper feels like. If they are not laced up tight, they will have too much “roll” (an issue that the Nitrocharge EnergySling addresses).
    They are also extremely light and a more comfortable alternative to any boot on the market. The touch is phenomenal and, as mentioned in the review, the sole-plate is better than any high-end boot I have owned. These are my new go-to boot; as long as I lace them up nice and tight. I only wish they would release a white version with a black tick. That would be gorgeous and still be classic-looking and give that extra edge over the Copa.
    If I’m coaching my youth team, I’ll wear the timeless Copa. But when its time to lace up for a game, the Premier wins hands down.

    Nike's website states that the Premier is made with Kangaroo and goat leather.

    • Good spot – still left slightly confused by what lies where!

      • Exactly. There is no real indication of which part of the upper is K-leather or what percentage.

        • There seems to be a change in material divided by the seam running from the third lace hole from the bottom to the Nike tick. You can tell by the grain of the leather.

          • I notice the same thing. Its actually buttery smooth from that seem to the heel. And slightly grainy from that seam through the forefoot. If I was to guess, the better leather is NOT on the toe-box. Hopefully Bryan can get details on what leather is on each part of the boot.

  4. This is class from Nike.
    I'd love to see Adidas counter with a white Copa or a re-release of the Profi Liga.

    • To be honest, they have probably already released something that would compete with the Premier – the original Adipure. It had the same stitch pattern in the forefoot as the Premier. The leather is buttery-soft and better than all Adipures after it and superior to the Copa (in my opinion).
      If they re-release that boot at a lighter weight and with a new sole-plate, they will have a winner.

      • There are rumors adidas will re release the Kaiser. Which, for those that don’t know, was essentially the take down of the copa. It was still a really nice boot and basically the same design but I believe it was either calf or full grain. My guess is they’ll price it right at $99 as if to say, “see the Premier isn’t the equal to the Copa. Its the equal to its little brother”. Of course, adidas also believes the Copa retails at $130 and that’s just not true anywhere but adidas’ own website.

  5. Bryan, how do these compare to the tiempo flight or even the trequartista as far as touch goes?

  6. My High School aged son was really excited to try these until he put them on. He found them to be very narrow in the forefoot and when cutting he felt the ball of his foot rolling off the edge of the sole plate. He was up a half size already just to get the boot on. Really, really liked the classic style but just didn’t work on his foot. He is coming from a Tiempo Mystic III and that issue was far less noticeable with them–only on cut drills in practice. We might end up having to custom order Trequartistas in a wide fit from Nike for $135 and hope they work. Will be trying them on in a regular width locally first to see if they’re even in the ball park, along with a few others. Too bad his feet don’t match his body shape: 5’9″ and 140lbs.

  7. I have flat and wide feet also I’d say, and I’m really having problems with my feet moving in the shoes, and when tightening I’ll lose the feeling in my feet, so it’s a pain in the ass. Would you recommend these for me? If a tiempo size 8 is good, is 8 also good in Premiers? Also, do the soleplate feel softer than Copas? Had a lot of pain in my feet after using Copas, just like I would have been stepping on rocks all day.

    • I bought the same size as my Tiempos. They are a little tighter but also more comfortable (weird).
      The soleplate is more comfortable than any other boot I have owned: Tiempo Legend, Adipure 1, 2, 3, 4 and 11Pro, Copa's, etc.
      I'm sold on this boot. I mentioned in a previous post that they have to be laced up really tight or they will feel like they roll when cutting. That is due to how soft the leather is. Other than that, the boot is perfect.

      • Is the 11Pro similar to 11Core? 11Core feels pretty good on my feet, does it have a similar fit to these classical Nikes? 11Core has allowed a nice stretch for me, although the parts which are not leather do give little pain, but it aint so bad. And does the Nike classic own a soft(er) bottom, and not so hard-wood bottom/soleplate like Copa has?


        • Brian can probably give more detail. Probably suited for a different thread. But I've owned the adicore II. They were a LOT tighter than the adipure II. And much less comfortable. I would assume the same for the 11core vs. the 11Pro.
          As for the Premier, it's much softer than the Copa which makes it much more comfortable.

    • Not Really. I would say that from personal experience, Nike's "classic" shoes run a little small in width and length. This is good for some who want that athletic fit, but bad for others. I am 5'10 and weigh 185 pounds. I am not fat but because of my large body frame I usually use brands like Diadora. If you want a better shoe for wide feet, i suggest the Diadora Maracana. It has the performance of the Copa and Premier, but at a little less price and a wider fit overall.

  8. Just got my pair and played a game today. 2 goals! The leather is like butter. I think its softer than the copa, legend, etc. The last shoe I had that was this soft were my predator manias almost 10 years ago. The sole plate is amazing. Feels like you're playing in a sneaker…an amazing kangaroo leather sneaker with great traction. Awesome awesome boot that you can grab at dicks for under $90.

  9. I was hugely excited about these cleats but I have to say I'm really disappointed after wearing them 4-5 times. The problem these cleats have was mentioned before but I have to confirm it since it's left them unusable for me. My feet roll like crazy wearing the premiers. When I cut or take shots my feet almost end up next to the soleplate since the leather is just too soft (yes that's possible). I feel like I'm losing all kinetic power. They should have stitched the leather a whole lot more in my opinion..

    • I had/have the same problem, but lacing them up really tight fixes the roll issue. I have a couple of boots that roll (Adipure 1, Legends, etc.) and lacing them tightly fixes that.
      Trust me, I like a loose fit. Especially when just running a practice for my youth team. But in game, any boot should be laced tightly. If they still roll, then they just weren't made for your foot.

  10. I really like the fit and how soft the leather is. But I may be the only person to have issues with the boot when it comes to comfort. I keep getting blisters from the material in the heel which is really disappointing for me because that also rules out Maestri’s for me as well.

  11. I’ve had the Adidas Adipure IVs before and loooooved them! Very comfy, love the look, performed great, and I’ve stuck almost exclusively with Adidas for years. Would really like to get another pair, but can’t seem to find them in the size I need and color I want. How would these compare to the Adipure IVs? And if people recommend the Adipure IVs over these, any recommendations on where to find them??

  12. I am wearing uk 7 Tiempo legend, and uk 6.5 Copa. My normal size is 7 uk, if I get a half size up for Nike Premiers, will is expand over wide after a few months?

  13. Awesome review! I couldn't agree more about the boot, it definitely rivals the Adidas Copa Mundial. The only problem I've had is that the insole slides around when I try to cut because the leather is too soft. Other than that, it's a great boot!

  14. I own them for about 8 weeks now and i'm possitive about them. They feel great, right out of the box, although i went a full size up. The biggest pro while buying them was the classic look (i dont like the bright colors on modern shoes) while still having that lightweight shoe. They feel great on the ball and i love the leather upper.

    Only con for me is that although i maintain them properly (let them dry in the house with newspapers in it, and i polish them every other week) they already start to tear light. So i have my questions abiout the lifespan.

  15. Any tips how to break them in quickly? I have bought true to size and tight as!

    Anyone have a problem with true to size after time?

  16. I am considering these as a christmas present and i have a few questions:
    1. Durability- How long will they last?/Any specific points to watch?
    2. Are there any other boots in this price range you'd recommend?
    3. This or the Copa?

    • im also rlly concerned about the durability of the shoe. so can someone tell us a little more??

      if this shoe was just as durable as the copa i would pick it. just waiting for a response.

      • Definitely wont be as durable as the Copa. Note how the soleplate of the Copa Mundial / Mizuno Morelia (Japan) is studded with 3 nails in the front, and 1 in the back. This is a demonstration of quality. These other "modern" boots (Nike Premier, Nike Tiempo Legend V, Umbro Speciali 4, ETC) do NOT have the studded soleplate. They are only held together by glue. Thus, there is often Separation of the leather from the soleplate after a few months. Why do big companies do this? Hint hint. So players have to buy new boots from them every few months. Contrast that to the Adidas Copa Mundial (Germany) or the Mizuno Morelia Japan. Those are pure, quality boots.

        • You cannot base an argument on durability based on rivets. There are several modern boots that do not rivet the sole plate to the last that are very durable. As far as the premier, I have worn it exclusively since June and there are absolutely no signs of separation. And although I agree that the Copa is durable, I have had more than one pair seperate at the toe-box. Only time will tell how well the premier lasts but I’d rather base it on actually using the boot rather than whether rivets were used to hold it together. As far as performance and comfort, I’d rather buy Nike Premiers every 2 years than a pair of Copas every 10. They are that much better. Just my honest opinion.

          • Yes you Can base an argument on a riveted soleplate. It is highly significant. What modern boots last as long as the Copa? Let me know. Your Nike Premiers have lasted 7 months? (applause). How do you know that those Chinese things will even last longer than a year? My Copa's are 5 years old. They have been driven to the ground in hard games. For years. They still work. Made in Germany son. The only reason they do not get worn anymore is because I switched to the Mizuno Morelia Japan. I walked away from the US-cleat market years ago. Its all about money-making at the expense of us players. Chinese factory production, flashy marketing, flashy colors. Where is the substance? My Mizuno Morelia Japan's would eat your Nike Premiers for breakfast. They are basically Copa's taken the mystical level. Much lighter, more flexible, better cushioned insole. No more soreness the next day after games (the Copa has a very firm insole). The Mizuno Morelia is hand-made in Japan with very high quality Kangaroo leather. The same sublime touch, the same conical stud-soleplate (like the Copa) for better agility (opposed to Blades). This Chinese attempt by Nike cannot even step into the same realm as the Copa or Mizuno Morelia. The last two mentioned boots have a real pedigree. They have been worn by non-sponsored professionals for years in Brazil, Germany, Italy, South America, etc. That respect cannot be challenged very easily. Furthermore, I have tried many new boots: Nike Tiempo Legend IV, Umbro Speciali Statement, Diadora Maracana, Lotto Stadio (Italian), Lotto Stadio Primato K. The only one that rivaled the Copa or Mizuno Morelia (Japan) was the Lotto Stadio (Made in Italy). However that boot was discontinued years ago. The production of the Lotto Stadio is now in CHINA and the shoe Sucks now. Anyway, have fun thats what its all about. Just educate yourself. Don't buy the hype. Look beyond what these companies try to shove down your throat. Peace.

          • EDIT: Copa's taken *to* the mystical level

          • Buy the hype?…… mean I should buy your hype rather than lace a pair of boots myself and actually use them? A little hypocrisy don’t you think? I do appreciate how much you love your boots but I never brought up the Morelia. Those are fantastic boots. But my argument that the Premiers are waaaay more comfortable than the Copas still stands. They ARE more comfortable. And lighter. And softer. I also stated that even if they only last 1/5 as long, I’d rather buy the premier. Just my sole opinion. I also didn’t bring up my Legend IV’s which are a GREAT boot as well, and much better than the Copas. (Made in Italy BTW). So I’ll say it again, don’t base how durable a boot is by how many rivets it has. And definitely don’t JUST buy a boot because of where it’s made. Don’t by the marketing hype and definitely don’t buy a boot based on how it fits someone else’s foot. Try them on and go from there. I still love my Copas. But I wouldn’t lace those bricks up. I’d rather wear my lighter and more comfortable Premiers, or legends, or Adipures, or jomas (with rivets BTW), or many others. Or I’ll save some money and buy some Neo’s. Those are nice. But I won’t make a final judgement on them until I try them on. Unless you want to give me another sermon on why they are better than all other boots combined. Then again, they only have 2 rivets. Maybe I should stay away.

          • I am not trying to hype anything. That is my point. But do you work for Nike? Nike Tiempo Legend IV made in Italy? They are from Vietnam. I wore them for 6 months before they fell apart. The Copa is far superior. The Nike Legend IV felt cheap. No matter how tight I tied them…they would always loosen up in games. Rolled my ankle several times because they would get so loose. They felt cheap. Like something from China. The Copa Mundial has been the dominant boot on the market since the 1980s-2003? I haven't tried the Nike Premier personally. But all the time these "Copa killers" come out of the woodwork. They usually fail. How can something from China or Vietnam compete? Companies produce from those countries to save costs. The leather isn't as high quality. The materials are not as solidly put together. The boot is not as Sound. The leather from the Nike Premier is better than the Copa Mundial? Are you serious? How can Kangaroo leather get much better than the Copa? The Kangaroo leather from the Copa Mundial is its main strength. Why do you think it has been so successful? For Year and Years. How many Years has the Nike Premier dominated the soccer shoe market? The leather on the Copa Mundial is one of the best you can buy. The Touch is Sublime. One of the best touches ever created. Only two boots have exceeded the Copa that I have seen in over 20 years. The Lotto Stadio Italy and the Mizuno Morelia Japan. The Diadora Brasil Italy was also up there. But these competitors from China/Vietnam? Come on, there is no chance. The Copa is a legend. There is nearly no fault in the boot. The touch is like butter. It laces up to your foot like a glove. There is so much quality energy coming from it. It is like a Mercedes Benz from 1992. Solid. Although firm, it is still Very Comfortable in games. Because it laces up to your foot so well. Yeah it is a little heavy. But you hardly notice the weight. And rivets do improve the longevity of the boot for your information. Especially when your Chinese Nikes separate from the lower within 6 months. Anyway you have your own opinion. You can't even begin to persuade me at least. But don't spread misinformation thats not cool.

          • Im not trying to persuade anybody. But there goes the hypocrisy again. It sounds like you are trying to pursuade me. Should I not believe my feet on how comfortable they are? Should I just wear what you suggest I wear. Because if I lace up both boots, the Premier is much more comfortable. And softer. If they don’t work for you, so be it. I would never force you to wear something that wasn’t comfortable for you. And it is very possible for other boots to have high quality leather. Heck, the adipure tourus leather is decent. A buddy of mine will not wear anything other than older predators (2nd tier) Everything else is unacceptable to him. Should I tell him that you don’t approve and that he is wrong? They work for him. And BTW, I just checked my legend 4’s again. It says “made in Italy” on the inside tag. But maybe it’s a city in China called “Italy”.

          • I'm following along with you guys and it is actually a great discussion. The Copa is tried and tested, as well as the majority of the other boots you guys bring up. Nike Premier is definitely a fantastic boot, and when you consider the price it give it leverage against the Copa. I feel like we are a few months from discovering their durability rating, with players getting a full season in them. Personally, I love the Premier and appreciate how Nike has gone about creating them and never encountered any durability issues (I've still been wearing them on and off). But I can't argue with the quality provided by the Copa.

          • I can’t argue against the quality of the Copa either. I still have a pair.

  17. Also, is rolling an issue?

    • Rolling is definitely an issue. But if laced tightly, you will be fine. There isn't a better boot in this price range.
      They are durable. I've had them since June with NO ISSUE AT ALL.
      They are better than the Copa. I'll take some hits for saying that but its true. Anyone who picks the Copa is probably picking them for its history.
      The premire is lighter, just as comfortable and looks great.
      Just my 2-cents.

      • So if they're laced tightly I will be fine? I have had ankle problems before with boots and these look like my perfect pair apart from this issue.

  18. best artificial grass boots, nike premier fg or nike libretto ag ?

  19. I like the fit on the premiers better then the copas. The premiers fit a lot tighter and my foot feel more locked down then in the copas

  20. Anyone know where I could still get a pair? Size Eu 42.5

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