Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite AG Review – A Step Forward for the GX

What Nike says about this boot: Designed for more precision, more agility and more comfort
Boot style: Control
Weight: 185g/6.53 ounces (US 9/27cm)
Previous model: Nike Phantom GX

The original Phantom GX boots were one of the most popular boots for Nike (aside from the Mercurial) over the past several years. They sold out constantly and seemingly almost everyone in the boot space has tried them.

So, when the Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite was announced, people were quite negative. After all, Nike seemed to have messed with the formula too much and changed what made the Phantom GX great. However, Nike have managed to improve the GX, for the most part.

Positive changes for the Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite AG

Nike phantom gx 2 football boot review

One of the main changes is the upper itself. Gone is the dual-layered forefoot and in its place is a one-piece upper that removes some of the material that gets between the foot and the ball. The Phantom GX 2 upper is stickier than the previous generation and because of the raised ribs, there is a greater emphasis on having a great touch in all conditions. The pattern of the GripKnit upper is designed to mimic the eye of a storm and Nike says that the GX 2 is designed for “more precision…more agility and more comfort”.

Nike has also changed to the heel to be more cushioned than the GX 1 and with this increased support as well. For some people it might seem overly cushioned, but it seems to fit multiple heel types.

The only thing that really carries over from the previous model, or the AG Pro model at least, is the soleplate. Which to be fair, seems decent enough and is generally well liked by people who wore the GX 1.

A voluminous fit

The overall fit of the boot has changed as well. First, Nike have opted for a wider last, which will please people who may have felt that there was not enough width or volume in the original model.

Nike phantom gx 2 football boot review

However, the previous GX did seem to fit a lot of foot types, and the wider fit on the GX 2 is a bit of a problem because for the average to narrow foot types, the wider fit leads to more bunching in the upper, especially around the midfoot. This does go away a little bit after breaking in, but it is still somewhat present.

Given the tagline for the boot, there is a lot for the Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite to live up to. The upper feels premium and it can be argued that these have one of the most premium feeling knit uppers on the market.

While the lockdown overall is good, there is not as much adjustment with the lacing system, and it tends to force a certain fit on the wearer. Again, after a few wears this gets better, but it still feels like your feet have to be a certain shape in order to fit the boot.

Moving on to the heel, it previously was decent, if a bit unstable. However, the newly designed heel on the Nike Phantom GX 2 has more cushioning that provides a more locked in sensation.

The heel is probably one of the most comfortable heels that Nike has produced in some time and in addition to the increased cushioning, it feels more stable as well. The only drawback is that there is some slippage at the bottom of the heel and even with grip socks the heel tends to move around a bit when making hard cuts.

As far as sizing goes, I went half a size down just as I did with the previous generation and while the fit was fine, I generally prefer a much tighter fit than other people, so I recommend going true to size.

Improved touch with GripKnit

There is a much closer feel than previously, and there is also a much bigger surface area with which to feel the ball. And you do feel the ball much more, pretty close to a barefoot touch. The touch is indeed excellent in multiple conditions, and even on muddier and wet fields, the GripKnit still provides a nice grippy sensation on the ball. It does not let you down.

Another thing that is a positive is the ridges that run along the upper. There is an interesting difference when compared to other boots, and the ridges make a huge difference on the ball, giving you more confidence when controlling the ball. Again, in wet or adverse conditions, it is a bonus to have such confidence on the ball.

The upper also has more grip than the previous GX and does take a little bit of time to get used to the grip, it soon feels like second nature. It does seem like Nike felt the need to make an improvement here and while the original GX had a good amount of grip, it is possible that some players wanted a raised surface to better control the ball.

Satisfaction for both midfield maestros and clinical strikers

Nike phantom gx 2 football boot review

Passing feels like a precise affair, with the grippier upper resulting in a more controlled feel when passing the ball. One might think that a combination of the ridges and the grippy upper would result in an awkward feeling when passing the ball but instead it feels as if the ball knows what you want to do with it.

Interestingly, the harder the ball is hit with power, the more the ridges seem to respond well to what is asked of them. The Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite are outwardly designed to accept what the wearer wants.

The ridges feel stiffer when hammering the ball and the placement of the ridges means that it is very enjoyable to curl the ball. It is also fun to knuckle the ball every shot in the boots feel powerful.

However, I would say that they do not feel as aggressive as something like the newest adidas Predator Elite.

There is a somewhat pingy sensation when hitting the ball, a bit more like one would expect of a speed boot rather than a control boot. The Nike Phantom GX2 will satisfy a lot of strikers and while I would not say it is the perfect striker’s boot, it is certainly up there.

Standard grip, decent enough for AG

Nike phantom gx 2 football boot review

While the AG plate has not changed, it is still good and even on wetter surfaces the soleplate is still grippy and provides a comfortable ride. Obviously, they clog up with mud easier, but it is not as bad as one would think. As long as the surface is not too muddy, the soleplate still works.

The problem with the soleplate is the same issue that I had with the GX 1. It is still far too flimsy and while some people may prefer this, for me it can cause unnecessary strain on the feet. Along with this, at times the studs do not feel properly anchored to the ground when hitting the ball which causes the planted foot to slide a little.

An improvement over the Phantom GX1, sort of…

Nike phantom gx 2 football boot review

While the upper is improved versus the GX 1, the decision for a wider fit means that for some people this GX is no longer an option as there might be too much bulging in the upper. It is ultimately a boot for people with wider feet and if you want a more snug fit, the adidas Predator is a better choice.

Also, they still have not fixed the soleplate issues of the previous generation. It feels as if you need an aftermarket carbon fibre insole or something in order to make the boot supportive enough, which given the already high price of the Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite, feels like a slap in the face.

Overall, a really good boot but not without its flaws.

This review was done in collaboration with Andrew Lockhart from The Lockhart Boot Blog.

Who is this for?
The Nike Phantom GX 2 Elite AG is for anyone who wants a close to barefoot feet while still having grip and power available on demand.
Upper padding (1 for thin, 10 for thick)
Width (1 for slim, 10 for wide)
Value for Money (1 for less value, 10 for great value)
Stud traction (1 for slippery, 10 for grippy)
Lockdown (1 for loose, 10 for secure)
Sole rigidity (1 for natural, 10 for responsive)
Reader Rating0 Votes
The Good
Premium knit upper
Cushioned heel
Grippy upper
Suitable for multiple surfaces
Wide fit
The Bad
Not recommended for narrower foot types
Flimsy Soleplate
Pricing is becoming absurd
out of 10
Find the best prices for the Nike Phantom GX 2
Andrew Lockhart
Andrew Lockhart
Boot Man in Japan. Have spent most of my adult life switching between Mizuno and ASICS, most recently have been wearing Adler more than anything else. Current Favorite all time boots is split between the Adler Yatagarashu and the Mizuno Ignitus KH.
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  1. Wow they stand out at nothing, except for the wide fit. That s what I loved about first lunas they had a contoured foot shaped more anatomically closer snugly kind of fit with out being restricting and feeling to tight nor to snug. Voluminous fitting boots makes for really poor comfort while playing and perhaps one might even be moving around inside the boot prone to a higher risk of injury. While the tech improves everything else did the opposite in my view and take from your review. The first release color of the Luna for women was somewhat rigid and had a fair amount of stiffness in the sole plate, but when seeing what James the wizard showed me his pair was way more flexible with almost no spring back compared to mine. I got mine from Nike directly and they might have been player issued but I don’t know. I will look into it though. For it to be a possible option for me to use and buy,, the boots needs to score a 9 /10 in your test. Everything below an 8 is out of the question for sure.


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