Over the past year, the Lotto Maestro 100 IV has become one of my go to pair of boots, with this being the second colorway I’ve been able to play test. If I was to summarize the silo, they are a very impressive boot that has been crafted for those that like to be creative on the pitch. Simple, yet effective. That should give you some indication of where this review is headed!
Breaking In and Comfort
When you put them on for the first time, the fit/shape feels a little off, kind of pulling your foot to one side. Key here it to open up the laces, let the fit hug your foot, then re-tighten them. Even though the tongue region features a stretch knit material, loosening the laces gives the material a chance to breathe and manipulate itself around your foot. I wore them for the first time around my office, just to get a feel for the shape and ensure there were no pressure points. From there, I dared to take them straight into a game and the results were very positive – thankfully! When you add in the tried and trusted PuntoFlex soleplate, they are the type of boot that provide confidence from first wear, and a distraction free level of performance.
Something else comfort wise that I really enjoy, is that knit material around the opening. It creates a snug and secure, hugging your foot without any pressure points. If you look along the lacing, the MAESTRO text sits up along the front of your ankle, a little higher than where a traditional tongue would fit. Again, it is a knit, so its purpose is to enhance a distraction free fit, which I’d agree it definitely does.
In Game Performance
Performance wise, they tout several unique technologies designed to enhance control, response, and comfort. The Control-Fit 3D knit upper found in the prior generation remains and provides an anatomical fit along with support where you need it thanks to a light cage overlay.
My experience on pitch was very positive from the very beginning. I was initially a little confused by the heel design. The cut on the upper opening is slightly lower, and it feels like there is a mini window cut out right where your heel bone sits. I’ve actually recommended these as an option for players with heel spurs, as it reduces direct pressure without you having to cut the heels out with a scissors. We have seen several pro players do this in the past, so I’m wondering if Lotto was trying to create a new type of solution to a very common problem. According to Lotto, this technology is actually called ADAPTO, and in their words it is “a knit element providing comfortable support while relieving irritating pressures on the tendons around the heel.” When you wear them, they actually feel pretty spectacular on foot and I quickly started to really enjoy everything about the heel area. What makes them different is the fact it is primarily a knit material around the ankle opening, so you have some natural movement and no firm area of material pressing against your skin.
When it comes to the upper forefoot and ball strike area, Lotto has gone with a structured knit design and thin synthetic overlay. This helps keep the shape in place and allows for added ball manipulation. The design is 3D, with a similar style dimple definition to what you would find on a golf ball. That added definition plays extremely well on the ball when coupled with the pliable knit material. You get excellent feel on the ball with the bonus of extra grip for small touches. In my personal opinion, this creates the type of modern day zone that combines perfectly as a control option with shot striking ability; the material moves very naturally and you get an added strike component thanks to the shape of the knot material.
Soleplate and Traction
Underfoot, you get two new updates; an improved version of PuntoFlex that provides fantastic responsive flexibility, and a new BFC (Biomechanical Foot Control) pebax insert found in the soleplate to provide stability and complement a natural running motion through its variable stiffness. I was able to break these boots right into a game, so from personal experience the soleplate provides exactly what you need – a distraction free level of performance! Key to that is also the conical style stud configuration and their placement underfoot. It makes them ideal for use on FG and AG fields, you can switch them up between grass and turf surfaces with confidence.
How do they Fit?
In terms of fit, I found them to be very much true to size length wise. They offer a medium-wide fit through the forefoot thanks to the extra stretch you get from the upper material. They ankle opening features knit, so there is the bonus of added stretch to be able to slip your feet into the boots. It provides a snug fit without you needing a shoe horn to get into them. I didn’t encounter any discomfort through wear, no pressure points or areas of discomfort.
I’m interested to know how different they would feel on foot without the soft window in the heel area. Not necessarily a negative, I’m more curious to know if there would be a positive difference for players that prefer a more solid feel through the heel. The one critic note I’d offer is that we don’t see Lotto advertising these anywhere, and it is such a shame. The same was through with the Under Armour Clone Magnetico, both being top performing boots from smaller brands. Without any advertising, it is difficult to see many people choosing them over bigger names, losing out on what is most likely an elite level experience.
Just as I was finishing this review, I noticed this Black/Acacia Green colorway dropped in price to $160. Perfect timing! The original retail value in the range is $200 with just 2 colorways available in the US.
Find them both (and any new colorways) at SOCCER.com.
The Skinny Summary
Highlight: A modern day control hybrid that offers excellent performance and comfort through wear.
Would I Buy Them: Yes – these are some of the best boots Lotto has released in recent times. And on sale, they offer excellent value.
Player Position: If you experience any heel pain, they are a top option. In terms of playing style, anyone that appreciates close control and natural touch on the ball will enjoy them most.