Salut! Friends. Recently my younger brother started playing football in school, and football is the buzz word among kids right now. He wanted to buy football shoes. So I searched on the web – How to buy football shoes? After hours of work, I realized buying football shoes is the most challenging task I’ve ever done, much like you feel while buying anything for the first time. So I decided to prepare a – ultimate guide on How to buy football shoes where I’ll explain every aspect related to football shoes that will help you to buy the best football boots out there.
Hey wait, it says- How to buy football shoes, and now I am saying football boots. Are the same? If you are a beginner football player, the first funny thing you would notice is what football shoes are called?
You might be thinking, Should I call them football boots or maybe football studs or football cleats? Hey, stop! Don’t think that much. In my Ultimate Guide to buy Football shoes, I will answer even this basic question that pops up in the mind of every beginner football player while buying the best football shoe, he wants. After reading my football boots buying guide, you will become a pro at buying football shoes. So keep moving ahead.
This guide to buying football shoes is ideal for beginner players or those who want shoes for football that can enhance the level of their game, make them Messi or Ronaldo. Especially for parents who are tired of their kid asking them to buy the best football shoe that even Ronaldo wears. Don’t worry parents. We are here to help you.
So without more delay, let’s jump right into our guide to buying football shoes that can make you or maybe your kids happy.
First and foremost, how can you buy a football shoe when you don’t even know what are they called. Yeah, you are right, let’s start with the football shoe terminology. Understanding the anatomy of a football shoe makes it easier for you to analyze the price, durability, performance, and quality of a football shoe.
Specific Parts Of A Football Shoe
Football shoes, soccer cleats, soccer boots, football boots, firm ground shoes
– For a start, consider them as same.
Definitely not your shirt’s collar! In case of football boots, the collar is made from a soft material which supports the ankle and also gives a tighter fit.
The removable cushioning the shoe is called insole.
The non-removable inbuilt cushioning of a football shoe.
Upper (of a boot)
Everything above the insole/midsole
The upper of a football boot is simply the part around the tongue and laces area.
The outsole is the part of shoe everything below the insole or midsole that comes in direct contact with the ground.
Heel Counter and Cushioning
The cushioing in the back heel portion of the shoe supports your heel and helps you relax.
The front portion of the upper i.e., the strike zone that makes contact with the football. Being the strike zone it is an essential part of a shoe. There can be multiple vamps stitched or have added technologies to enhance shot power and ball control.
By the way, studs are not football shoes. Studs are the rubber, metal or plastic points coming out the sole of shoes for football. Studs help to keep traction on the surface so that you don’t slide. They enhance stability, which helps you with your performance on the football ground.
The stud is also called a cleat. Cleats can be fixed/molded or detachable on the bottom of the shoe.
Depending on the shape, Studs are of 3 types –
- Bladed – Bladed studs create less stud pressure throughout a match. Bladed studs offer more excellent traction and speed.
- Hard ground – For playing on extremely hard, firm surfaces, hard ground studs ensure proper traction and a reduced risk of injury.
- Round/conical – The conical studs offer more points of contact with the field; this stability means less risk of injury. Further, conical studs provide a quicker release and more excellent stability.
- Note:- Check with your league before using metal-tipped studs as metal studs are banned from certain leagues.
Last is essential to decide the size and shape of the shoe. It is the three-dimensional foot model used to construct a shoe.
Wide last boots are the shoes made for people with wide feet.
Before buying football shoes, a good knowledge of these specifics of a football shoe will help you a lot.
Types of Football Shoes
There is not much of a difference between football shoes for men and football shoes for women, that’s why most female football players wear men’s soccer boots. But there are specially designed football shoes for women, which offer better performance.
Firm Ground Soccer Shoes (FG)/ Soccer Cleats
Firm ground is the classic soccer shoe, and most of the time a soccer shoe is an FG boot.
- Worn while playing on firm grounds
- Generally, a series of non-removable PU/TPU/rubber studs(bladed or conical).
- Plastic studs provide sufficient traction on the firm ground without causing the blistering that metal studs can create on the firm ground.
- Metal studs penetrate in the firm ground and cause higher resistance, which leads to blistering.
Artificial Grass(AG)/ Hard Ground Football Shoe
- AG boots are used on astroturf(artificial grass) and sun-baked hard grounds.
- Artificial grass shoes are similar to firm ground cleats just with a lot more studs, evenly distributed on the outsole, that is shorter for better support.
- Extraordinarily durable and rubber cleats.
FG/AG Hybrid Soccer Cleats
Most football fields are going artificial as –
- They require less maintenance
- Less susceptible to weather
- Offers consistent surfaces
Due to the above advantages of astroturfs, most fields are shifting to artificial grass. So hybrid soccer cleats help you play with the same shoe on natural and artificial grass.
Hybrid soccer cleats provide acceleration on firm, natural surfaces and artificial grass with multiple cleat shapes and lengths.
Soft Ground Football Shoes (SG)
Soft ground refers to a surface that may have been wet at some time, which makes the football ground soft.
- SG boots have metal studs.
- The metal studs are longer so that they can penetrate the soft ground and provide maximum grip.
- SG boots also come with detachable and exchangeable studs so that they can be customized for playing conditions and fields.
- Pro Soft Ground soccer cleats have a combination of fixed and detachable studs. To get enhanced traction, they are ideal for use on wet and muddy fields.
Training Shoes/ Running Shoes
Training shoes have a durable rubber outsole. They can also have a soccer shoe upper paired up with a rubber training outsole. Training shoes offer comfort and cushioning for your soccer training routine. You can also use training shoes for running.
Indoor Football Shoes / Futsal Shoes
An indoor soccer shoe is used for playing in the gym or futsal. You can also wear them as leisure and streetwear. Indoor soccer, just like sneakers have a lower profile fit with a gum rubber flat outsole.
Things to Consider While Buying Football Shoes
Weight is one of the most important things to consider while buying football shoes. If you are a winger or your position is such that you need to run more and fast. Consider purchasing a lighter football shoe.
A striker wants a boot that enhances shooting and helps in scoring more goals. A striker’s boot may have a jagged outer strike zone, to promote the football ping ferociously off the foot.
Otherwise, if you are a midfielder, you want a football shoe with a soft upper so that control is easier.
The upper of a football shoe comes in two materials –
Natural leather is soft, has excellent ball touch and exceptional ability to conform to the foot. Don’t use leather on wet fields as leather tends to absorb water easily.
Leather comes in 3 types –
Kangaroo leather is premium, used by professional players. It is incredibly lightweight and soft. It is not waterproof and less durable than other types of leather. Since kangaroo leather stretches after few uses, buy a bit tighter pair.
Calfskin is soft and water-resistant with excellent ball touch. Although it maintains its shape better but is a bit heavier than kangaroo leather.
Full-grain leather is thicker and tougher than calfskin and kangaroo. It is A water-resistant and handles wear and tear good. Full-grain leather is comparable to calfskin and kangaroo leathers in terms of ball feel and fit. But it weighs more than kangaroo and calfskin leathers.
Lighter and more durable.
Upper material can significantly affect the price, performance, and weight of a soccer shoe. So before buying a soccer shoe, know well your budget, how long you will wear your boots and your style of play.
Type of Boot (AG, SG, FG)
As discussed already, specific boots are required to play on a particular kind of surface. Don’t waste money by buying the best AG football boot if you play on a grass pitch. Instead, you need to buy an SG boot
You should buy a snug fit football shoe(especially in kangaroo uppers). Soccer cleats should fit as close to the end of the foot with a 1/4 to 1/2 inch gap. This gap is essential for performance and comfort.
Women’s sizing is smaller than men by size to a size-and-a-half. A women’s size 8 is men’s 6.5. Youth or junior sizes are just smaller men’s sizes (sizes 1-6).
Some boots are designed to last longer and therefore before buying football shoes, make sure you determine how long you are planning to keep and use them for. Premium shoes are designed for exceptional performance and are less durable than affordable shoes.
That’s too much information. But don’t worry, focus on the points essential for you and buy the best football shoe. But this isn’t the end. I’ve got some bonus tips for you.
- Clean your shoes after every game to ensure that they last longer. You must have seen players removing dirt and debris between the cleats.
- To increase the life of your shoes, you must keep them dry. Never leap your shoes damp otherwise they will get ruined.
- On average cleats last for about one season.
- Buy high-top football shoes provide extra support for your ankles. If you have to make a lot of constant lateral movements, consider buying them to avoid ankle injuries.
- If you are a skilled player and need to make quicker movements, consider buying mid cut football shoes. They will allow you to maneuver easily on the field.
- Don’t buy shoes based on their looks, check out the boots for the things described in this ultimate guide to buy soccer shoes.
Finally we’ve reached the end of this ultimate guide that will help you buy the best football shoes. I hope you like this guide to buying football shoes. Share it with your friends so that even they can buy the best soccer shoes. Bye for Now.