The evolution of the football boot - from the Predator to a knitted 'all-in-one' boot and sock

Liverpool striker Luis Suarez will be wearing a pair of knitted boots against Manchester United - but have things gone too far?

A football boot should be a simple object. A good fit, to help a player's control and touch, and decent studs so they don't slip over.

But from starting out as something that protected the foot, somewhere things got weird.

One of the most obvious developments was the coloured boot, something derided upon it's introduction but now commonplace on the football pitch. Black boots in the Premier League are almost as rare as a coherent Manchester United performance.

In terms of technology, it really got going when adidas introduced a boot that most thought roamed the South American jungle, messing with Arnold Schwarzenegger and his crew of mercenaries - the Predator.

A pair of adidas Predators A pair of adidas Predators The revolutionary boot, which brought new ideas in terms of design and aesthetics, opened the door to further advances.

But recently things have just got silly.

With the World Cup looming, the big manufacturers - adidas, Nike, PUMA - are all vying for our attention, and it seems 'revolutionary' boots that appear to make no sense at all are the way forward.

Last week we were introduced to the 'knitted' boot. Rather than made lovingly by a grandmother and with something like a big sheep or Father Christmas on it, it was created by adidas and Luis Suarez will be wearing them. It's called the Samba Primeknit and apparently it 'fits like a sock'.

The adidas Primeknit boots that will be worn by Luis Suarez The adidas Primeknit boots that will be worn by Luis Suarez  

Nike are also part of the knitting circle - using 'Flyknit technology' to create the Magista. Those ones will be worn by Barcelona's Andres Iniesta.

Nike's Magista boots, held by David Luiz Nike's Magista boots, held by David Luiz  

This is what Nike had to say about the Magista in the press release: "Born from four years of R&D in the Nike Sport Research Lab and with feedback from some of the world's best attacking playmakers, including Barcelona's Andrés Iniesta and German forward Mario Gotze, the Magista is designed to enable devastating creativity in a game where space is at a premium."

Wow! A pair of these and it sounds like even this writer could be beating the best centre-backs in the world.

Knitted footwear appears to be the way forward - and adidas have even unveiled something that manages to take the concept even further - 'the world's first knitted all-in-one football boot and sock hybrid'. It might look like a Wellington Boot, but all the kids will want a pair of Primeknit FS.

The adidas Primeknit FS - providing an all-in-one boot and sock The adidas Primeknit FS - providing an all-in-one boot and sock  

With all these new releases, it would appear there is a common goal (aside from selling as many as possible). It would seem all this technology is driven at making the boot as close as possible to an actual foot.

But there is another version already on the market - and it costs nothing - and the world's best football nation are big fans. It's called going bare foot, and five World Cups suggests it hasn't done Brazilian kids any harm.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss