Diadora are a boot company who’s products I have often liked the look of, but I’d never had the opportunity to get a pair to have a run out in. That was remedied when I received the Diadora Italica K Pro MG 14 (try saying that three times fast) and I couldn’t wait to get them out for a run about.
Now I’ve been sitting on this review for a while, because the Canadian outdoor season for my teams ended in the middle of September, so I’ve had to use them on AG pitches indoors over the last month, as such its isn’t going to be a review in the strictest of senses.
Find the Diadora Italica K Pro at Soccer.com.
Initial Thoughts and Reaction
When the Italica’s first arrived in I took one look at them and declared, “If Roberto Baggio were still playing, I’m sure these would be the type of boots he’d be wearing.”, and then I promptly had to play Flash-based game, Roberto Baggio’s Magical Kicks for a solid half an hour (if I’m on a computer and read, type, or think Roberto Baggio, I have to play that game). But back to the boot, the one’s I took in for testing were in the Black/Match Winner/White colourway, which combines a classy heritage look, with just a bit of modern pop from the fluorescent yellow that Diadora’s colour wheel refers to as Match Winner.
The Italica’s features a K-Leather upper which has a bit of a glossy sheen (more on this further on) to it which I was not expecting as I hadn’t seen it’s like on any other K-Leather boot before. On just looks alone, Diadora has come up with a tidy looking release in the Italica K Pro MG 14 which weighs in at a thoroughly decent 10oz.
The pair I received were a size 9 (I tend to fluctuate between a 9 and a 9.5) and I had a little bit of a concern, Diadora’s specs for the boot indicated that boot featured a non-stretch inner lining. This was something which took me aback, generally when you have a K-Leather or Leather boot, you allow for some stretch so that the boot molds better to the wearers foot, here Diadora are saying that they don’t think it’s necessary. Armed with this information I did something I never do with my boots and took them out for a light jog and shot session at my local park before using them in game.
[Also: Diadora DD-NA Review]
Even with the bit of a break in the first couple of wears were a tad uncomfortable, I was able to get them through a full match a the third time of trying, so you’ll definitely want to spend some time on the Italica before you work them into matches. When it comes to the fit of the Italica’s they came across as running a bit on the small size, as I’d gone down a half size for the review it was as though I’d given up a full size. So you’re definitely going to want to order a half size up if you like a bit more room in your boot.
Observations Through Testing
As the review turned out to be a protracted endeavor, I’m going to stay from my usual boot reviewing method, as I don’t think it’d be a fair assessment. In my view the Italica is a boot designed for the battling defensive midfielder or a central defender, who gets into the tackle and moves the ball along quickly, which just isn’t my game. Things were also hampered by the earlier mentioned glossy sheen (coating?) on the K-Leather upper, maybe I’ve been spoiled by prior K-Leather boots I’ve worn; but I’ve never encountered K-Leather with a gloss sheen on the upper. Now the question remains, if it’s a coating, why’s it there? Is it there to make the boot water repellent?
Receiving a pass and controlling the ball left me feeling the ball sliding off the boot when it shouldn’t have been, and as a player who relies on his touch on the ball it did leave a sour taste in my mouth. Despite feeling let down by the upper on the touch, I had no complaints when it came to striking the ball, the strike was true which is exactly what you’d expect from a no nonsense pair of K-Leather boots. The 14 conical studs never left me looking for grip during the testing period either.
I came away from my time with the Italica’s conflicted. I wanted to like them, as they’re a classy looking boot, I wanted them to work with my game but it was never going to be; the upper was just too slick. As this is my first experience with Diadora, I’d like to put it down to a fluke, as with the exception of the Cambio everyone on the site who’s worn them is a fan of their quality, I just can’t personally recommend that you should drop the $110 to snag yourself a pair. I’ve passed them along to a defensive minded friend and there’s a possibility I’ll go to them down the road and seek their opinion for an update.
You can currently find the Diadora Italica K Pro at Soccer.com.