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Best football boots for midfielders

We pick the perfect boots for the maestros in midfield.

Last updated on 4 April 2022 to reflect latest releases and reviews.

As someone who’s affectionately teased as a “football manager” on the pitch for explaining football tactics, positioning and shapes, it’d be really remiss of me to categorise midfielders into a single homogenous group – even if they play in the same position technically. Jordan Henderson, for example, takes on a more destructive role, while Jorginho starts and facilitates Chelsea’s attack.

We’re therefore not going to recommend boots strictly by position, but instead by playstyle and preference. Whether you’re expecting a lot of touches on the ball as your team’s central pivot, the designated long-range shot taker or just a jack of all trades, we’ve got recommendations for everyone.

Here are our best boots for midfielders.

adidas Predator Edge .1 – The Set-Piece Specialist

If you’re one who makes a difference with a set piece in the game, perhaps the adidas Predator Edge.1 could work in your favour.

From supplying weighted balls into the box to curling the ball away from the ‘keeper outside the box, the rubber elements do a great job of adding spin to your strike especially if you’ve got your technique right.

And if you love those Pogba-esque outer foot passes, look no further than the Predator Edge.1.

Nike Tiempo Legend 9 Elite – The Midfield Conductor

If you see yourself as the “Link Man” in your team’s midfield play, always looking to receive and move the ball quickly, the Nike Tiempo Legend 9 might just be the perfect boot for you.

As the connecting point of the entire team, you’d expect to have a lot of touches on the ball and the soft leather upper provides just the right amount of padding and density that contributes to the elegant feel with every touch.

Mizuno Rebula Cup Japan – The Modern No. 6

Perhaps the clearest tactical evolution over the past two decades has been the role of the defensive midfielder. Not merely a shield in front of the defence, they’re now also expected to drop into the defensive line to begin attacks with precise passes or relieve pressure from the team with quick switches of play. They defend through anticipation and interceptions instead of purely just tackling. To dictate the game and tempo for the team, they value comfort but more importantly a great touch on the ball to work their magic, modelling after players like Toni Kroos and Jorginho.

For a midfielder who needs to tackle, distribute and run the game from deep, the Mizuno Rebula Cup Japan should be your boot of choice. The boot requires no break in time for you to clock all that mileage in the centre of the park. The FT Foam pods help to take the sting off sharp passes and cushions the ball nicely to give you confidence in control and passing. Those very pods also provide ample protection for you when going in for those one-on-one challenges.

And if you do get the rare opportunity to shoot from distance, you get a nice punchy feel when hitting your screamers into the top corner.

Puma Future Z 1.3 – Box to Box

Two words – Steven Gerrard. The box-to-box midfielder is what every 90s kid grew up wanting to be. Thanks to his brilliance, every team I played for had at least one player in a number 8 jersey, taking pot shots from ambitious areas. They were also unbelievably athletic and the workhorse of our team, running up and down the midfield to attack and defend when needed. Players they identified with were the likes of N’Golo Kanté, Georginio Wijnaldum, IIkay Gundoganand of course, Steven Gerrard.

The Puma Future Z 1.3 is one of those boots that I keep coming back to as a midfielder, because of how all-rounded it is, perfect for the all-rounded box to box midfielder. It’s got probably the best fit on the market, thanks to the compression element that stretches all across the lace and midfoot area. With the now integrated compression upper, you feel even more locked in as you pivot towards the end-to-end direction of the game.

What makes it even better is the addition of the Z Soleplate, which gives you that nice springy sensation that helps to add that extra spring in each step, helping to reduce fatigue when moving up and down the pitch.

ASICS Ultrezza AI – The Line-Breaking Midfielder

Another tactical trend that’s come to the forefront in recent years, is the importance of being “press-resistant”. With teams adopting a high-press, midfielders who can bypass that press with a dribble or a well-positioned one-two are extremely valuable in the modern game.

The likes of Mesut Özil, Luka Modrić and pretty much every Spanish midfielder in the National Team during that golden 2008-2012 era, all excel at this. They’re the ones who look to receive the ball under intense pressure from one or even two opposition midfielders, before ghosting past them to lay off a well-timed assist to the strikers.

Yes, it’s another leather boot, but for good reason, because leather gives you that elegant, padded touch on the ball. The Ultrezza AI is perhaps the most comfortable boot I’ve worn to date, without compromising on lockdown even after break in.

What separates it from other leather boots is its soleplate, with the addition of a “brake” stud for those quick changes of directions to unbalance opponents. The cherry on top is the addition of the fuzeGEL and a 5mm lift which provides extra comfort and keeps you on your toes to help you accelerate past your opponents.

adidas X Speedflow .1 – The Late Runner into the Box

Some of us love sneaking into the box undetected to pop up and score that crucial goal. Often, we need that quick turn of pace to go from 0-100 in a flash.

The adidas X Speedflow.1 comes with a carbon fiber plate in the forefoot to give you that springy effect when pushing forward. Coupled with the aggressive bladed studs, this entire outsole could just be the best friend of those who build their game on bursting into the box Frank Lampard-style.

Have a boot you feel is perfect for midfielders that’s not on the list? Let us know in the comments below.

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[…] A boot made for the twinkle toed player that is all about manoeuvrability. Expect a barefoot touch for those mazy dribbles though we also think the Nemeziz could make a damn fine boot for the box-to-box midfielder. […]

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