Didier Drogba has started the new season as he finished the last one, by bagging a hat-trick at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea ran rampant against a newly-promoted West Bromich Albion side.

However, there was one significant change to Drogba’s performance, which came in a switch of his football boots.

Whilst the big Ivorian ended the last campaign in his Black/Black/Volt Superfly I‘s, Drogba turned out to the new season game sporting the Mercurial Vapor Superfly II, in the Nike World Cup Elite Series colourway.

However, all wasn’t completely as it seemed – as the Superfly II‘s he was wearing were not only missing the adaptable NikeSense studs that are the signature of the Superfly II, but also didn’t feature any of the Orange that mark out Elite Series soles whatsoever!

These Superfly II’s feature an entirely black Carbon Fibre sole, with a very unique stud configuration – in fact, from what we can tell, Drogba seems to be using a soleplate based on the highly-valued Mercurial Vapor SL

This was probably a wise move by Drogba (who we know is very switched on when it comes to his football boots) as the weather took a turn for the worse in London on Saturday, and the longer blades of the SL soleplate can make all the difference in such unfavourable conditions.

The game also provided plenty of fodder for boot spotters as both sides made some interesting choices in footwear.

West Brom’s Pablo Ibanez won his battle with a hamstring injury to feature in Roberto Di Matteo’s starting XI, and also marked himself out as one of the few players in the Premier League to favour the excellent Joma Total Fit football boots.

Florent Malouda and Yossi Benayoun also seemed to end of their pre-season dalliances with the adidas F50 adiZero, and turned out in their old Nike favourites; Benayoun in the Orion Blue Superfly I and Malouda in the World Cup Nike CTR360 Maestri Elite. Will they switch back again? We’ll be keeping a sharp eye on them for you!

Have you spotted anyone else wearing this awesome sole-plate?

Or have you got any other great football boots spots from the opening weekend?

Let us know!

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  1. says: BiyiAdetunji

    I thought nike say that they go to the players and find out what they do and dont like about the boots to help with the creation of the boots, they must have ignored drogba because he’s had to change pretty much half the boot to feel comfortable!

  2. says: Geo

    During the Community Shield Malouda had some blacked out boots with the Nike red laces but I couldn’t tell what they were. Can someone shed some light on this?

  3. says: kyle

    Hey Geo – I think they were Elite CTR360’s. In this picture you can see that the laces curve towards the inside (a unique feature of the CTR) and there’s the divide towards the toe of the boot that looks like the ‘pods’ of the Maestri

    Hope that helps!

  4. says: kyle

    @Brian – He was indeed, seems to be sticking with them into the new season!

    @atha not on the soles. If you look on the bottom of all Elite Boots, there’s an orange ‘frame’ around the whole sole, Drogba’s don’t have this

  5. says: Frank

    I don’t understand how some players can ‘just’ switch to other brands.

    I mean Benayoun, Malouda, Anelka (and others) if these players are sponsored with a particular brand how can they just turn up to a match or training wearing adidas.

    I assume they are contracted with Nike or Puma, if so, do they get a warning or fine by their sponsors? Please help.

  6. says: Fifinho

    as far as I know Drogba has been wearing Superfly II’s with a Vapor IV SL soleplate for a while now, I saw a few photos about a month ago of him in training with these

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