If you are going to introduce a new heritage style boot to the market, you have to make sure to give them a classic name. The latest to drop is the New Balance 442. The game has definitely shifted away from what is a traditional 442 formation, but it is a formation that still stands as the standard for consistency. If you ask a team of players to drop into a 442, it almost comes naturally. And that is the theme of this release from New Balance.
It took a while, but we finally got our hands on a pair New Balance 442, but finally we did and have already had a chance to wear them a few times. They fall true to their name, providing a simple yet effective level of performance. There is nothing spectacular on offer, nothing that will blow you away. But, you can take them out of the box and comfortably right into play thanks to the fact they are built with pliable materials; a supple K-leather upper and a thin polymer soleplate.
On foot, they provide a true-to-size fit, suitable for any players up to a medium/wide fit. If you need a boot with an accommodating fit, they don’t fit the mold. There is a chance that the K-leather upper will stretch over time, but initially they better suited to a medium/wide foot shape.
And as you might expect, they very much fall in line with the likes of the Nike Premier and adidas Gloro. You get a similar, traditional style black upper that sits on a simplistic low-profile soleplate with conical studs. The entire package is ideal as an option for players that value comfort, and they come with the bonus of having multi-function across FG and AG surfaces. Another cool addition on these is a Velcro under the tongue that keeps them locked down very effectively.
And I’ve got to admit, they do perform very similarly to their Nike and adidas competitors. On foot, there isn’t a lot of difference. And since they are available at a very similar price range, that leaves the decision between each boot down to personal preference. Do you want the mainstream brand, or something different?