FROM THE SOLE: SIBLING RIVALRY

We’ve all had those moments of sheer helplessness, when you see something or someone being subjected to something that you comprehend as wrong, but there’s nothing you can do to make anything right. I never thought I’d open an article about football boots, like that but…
Nike Mercurial Miracle II football boots

Such a moment hit me on Youtube, of all places, the other day;'  I felt genuine empathy towards a fellow fan of football boots, that I’d never met before – after he made the irreversible mistake of showing off his new cleats on the internet.

I won’t post a link up to the exact video, but the crux of the story is some pre-teen youngster is so proud of his new Nike Mercurial Victorys, he’s made a video of his cleats with his webcam to show them off, and erroneously labelled his home movie as ‘NIKE MERCURIAL VAPOR SUPERFLY UNBOXING.’

Now to most people, this isn’t really a big deal – he’s just a kid, he likes to think he’s got the same boots as all the big players and that makes him feel good about himself, so much so he’s made a Youtube video to show off to his friends. But there exists a special kind of person on Youtube (and indeed the internet) known as the Troll (And when football boots are concerned they usually go by a moniker involving ‘CR9/7/Ronaldo’ or any combination thereof).

And this troll, CR9Sk1llzm45ter (or whatever his indecipherable internet pet-name was) has taken the time to find and watch said video – and then laid a barrage of abuse in the comments section, accusing someone, who is essentially a child, of being ‘poor’, ‘cheap’ and calling his football boots ‘fake’ or ‘rip-offs’,

Now, I know haters gonna hate – but I couldn’t help but wonder – why is there such a stigma surrounding ‘Sibling’ or ‘Takedown’ models?

 

adiCore IV football boots from adidas

Looking at models like the adiCore IV and Mercurial Miracle II, these football boots are actually better (on paper) than the ‘top’ models of most cleats were 6 or 7 years ago.

Features like glass-fibre soleplates, 230g lightweight construction and Teijin microfibre uppers used to only be reserved for the £130+ models of the Mercurial Vapor back in the MVIII & MVIV days, and now all of the above are available on the Miracle.

Even if you’re not after a flashy pair of football boots, the adidas adiCore still offers a great feature-set for half the price of the adiPure IV, including the same last, a variety of soleplates and a full-grain calf-leather upper – it’s hardly putting my neck out on the line to say that Sibling boots are the best they ever have been (though granted, they are the most expensive they ever have been, too).

You only have to look as far as the recently re-vamped Mercurial Vapor line to see what I’m talking about. Even if you discount the Mercurial Vapor VII as being a takedown (which is up for debate!), whilst the best the Superfly III can boast over the II is a new lick of paint, the Miracle II now boasts that it’s built on the Superfly’s last, has the same upper and stud configuration as the Vapor VII and was actually available on Nike iD way before the new Superfly.

What’s even more important about Sibling boots, is I firmly believe that they support the football boots industry as a whole way more than ‘top level’ cleats.
adidas F30 Football Boots

For those of you that play weekend football at an amateur level, when you’re out on the pitch this weekend – discounting boots like the Copa Mundial – see how many players on the pitch are actually wearing the £120+ models. My guess is it’s not as many as sibling boots!

When Nike’s spending £3.4m sponsoring Mesut Ozil and god-only-knows how much on the likes of Ronaldo and Rooney, they have to make some serious bank off each ‘generation’ of their football boots to be able to not only retain top stars to advertise their boots; but pay for the production costs and distribution of their range and pour money into developing the Superfly IV and Laser V!

And the glorious thing about sibling boots is, not only are they cheaper to produce – but they get bought by people who wouldn’t normally buy top-level football boots. Everyone’s got a mate who just plays ‘when he’s needed’, or is just coming back from an injury – nine times out of ten, they’re not going to turn up for 3-4 games of a season wearing £275 Superfly’s.

What I’m getting at is, ‘Top’ level boots will always be the the yardstick that brands will measure against each others football boots by, they’ll be the ones that fanboys argue over and they’ll be the ones that everybody aspires to wear, but, is owning a sibling boot really something that should be frowned upon?

Are you an owner of any of the ‘takedown’ models?

If so, what do you think of them? Would you agree that now is a better time than ever to own a pair?

Let us know in the comments!


49 Comments

  • There is just no shame in wearing the take-down boots. When you play in hard surface fields, these boots are actually better. They are more comfortable and since the cleats are not so long the traction is way better. I do own pairs of CTRs and Adizero but after coming back from an injury I found the good ol’ Copas to be much better. I do not play in nice fields where SG boots are needed , so why ruin a $300 dollar boot on 5v5 games? My borther just got a pir of Tiempo Elites and he stillprefers to wear his old Tiempo mystics.

  • i own the world cup miracles, and i actually like them better than my MVIV’s. They are way more comfortable, and the traction is acutally better. The only thing is that when i wear 2 pairs of socks with the Miracles, it seems like i cant feel the ball as well. anyone else have this issue? the socks i am wearing are not thick at all either.

  • I wear of the Mizuno Supersonic Wave for 5 a side of football. I think that brands such as Nike and Adidas make fantastic football boots and the Adizero Prime is Testament to that. However the cost of these boots is astronomical and for someone like me who only plays 5 a side once a week it would not be worth the expense. I would advise though that if you are going to get a pair of take down boots buy the ones from the silos which are made from leather e.g. Adipure or Tiempos or indeed Morelias. These are probably the closes kind of take down boots which you can get which are most similar to the top level boots. The other boots such as Adidas F10s are only similar to the top level boots in style, although they’re probably more comfortable.

  • I own Superfly 2 and im considering getting the new ones. After wearing vapors for a few years now i don’t think i’ll ever go back to “Sibling Boots” because I just don’t feel that they offer me anything. Phsycological maybe but i like to take pride in wearing “top” boots. Anyone else the same or just me?

  • I previously had a pair of Nike Tiempo Legend III Natural that were fantastic and very comfortable. I bought the Nike Tiempo Legend III as a result, which were double the price by the way. I found that there was very little difference. The leather was a little softer but this did not make it any more comfortable. However, psychologically wearing the top model in the series does make you feel better. I’d also guess that durability is also an important factor when deciding whether or not to buy a high end boot. If you play regularly by all means invest in the higher end boot otherwise the takedowns can be good for a kickabout here and there.

  • i always used to get the talarias instead of the vapors not only because they were more comfortable but because the only pair of actual vapors i had tore up after only about a month and a half of play. alot of times thats been the case for me where the “top” quality boots didnt last as long

  • I love the sibling boots, I don’t wear them but I love to look at them because they remind me of when I was younger and everything was for fun. People shouldn’t be making fun of others for having take down models. Look at some of the elite players today, they didn’t have the highest model(or boots at all for that matter), and they are now playing in the finest equipment available because they worked hard with what they had in the past.

  • this article made so much sense. theres nothing wrong with takedown boots.the takedown boots are also good with ag and indoor boots. it makes me laugh wen i read in these articles about the new prime or elite boot and people have the nerve to moan how they are so expensive. they are NOT pro footballers and would be better off with the take-down models. common sense is not as common as it seems. with the superfly and primes, its the f10s + f30s and miracles + victorys what recoups the money for adidas and nikes, not the top end boots

  • i know people in the caribbean who dont play with boots and they are twice as hot as a spoilt kid with top end boots. its not the boots that makes a player

  • I love take-down boots. Partly because you can buy a lot of pairs instead of one pair of high-end football boots. My only problem is when you play a lot they are less durable. For example my Mercurial Miracles fell apart after about 3 months. Now I just recently bought the Tiempo Legend III. I think the performance is all in your head though. I do feel better knowing I have the top model and getting the little bag to go with it. It just makes you feel like you can do anything, and now you know that you have the best boots so you have to live up to them.

  • Amen! Even most of the guys of my league team, and we practice 4 times a week, play with siblings. They just like the comfortable boots that,even if bought in a small size, leave the toenails alive ! 😉
    I usually play with the adidas Predator and will change to the adizero, but I also always have sibling boots and really cheap boots for turf. They all have their use and purpose. And last summer I needed to borrow shoes for a game and they were the Nike Mercurial Miracle in the Elite colourways and the y were brilliant! I don’t like the Vapors nor the Superfly, but that boot was comfortable while giving me enough feeling for the ball.

  • When I started playing my first pair of boots were puma’s which cost about $60, I’ve never had any problems towards others who wear takedown boots because it’s not a big deal. Some people on YouTube get mad because people label their videos as something else for views and things like that. Usually superfly Unboxings get the most views since those are the ones most people like/want. Trying to pass off some mercurial victory’s as superfly’s will definitely attract the wrong kind of attention. Comments should never turn into personal insults, all the troll needed to say was you labeled it wrong and that’s it no need for insults like that. I myself used to use the taken down versions since I didn’t buy them myself when I was younger but now that I work I save up and buy some when I can. But that person is definitely a troll because most people would just comment “those are victory’s not superfly’s”

  • Great, great article. I bet you CR9Barney-whatever-his-name-is can’t even play keepie uppie. Now I’m not a pro, however I’m part of a team who competes on local tournaments and so and if you ask me the answer would be obvious; would I like to own a pair of Superflys or Adizeros? SURE! I tried them a before and they’re sweet!
    But being honest, they is a better price to value relation when you stick with the takedown models as you put them. I love my Miracles! They light, comfortable and even look like the Superflys. People have even asked me if I own the “Ronaldo” shoes hahaha. I’ve had Talarias, Glides, F30s, Beckenbauers (Copa Mundial’s humble brother) and so, and for the ordinary guy like me, they do the trick.
    Like I said, top tier boots are way cooler, lighter, more comfortable, whatever you want to say. But I think Kyle had it right, there are more people out there wearing their trusted pair of takedown boots than those wearing Superflys or Adizeros!

  • Only noobs buy take down boots.

    Sometimes I will buy top of the range boots in other brands such as Lotto. That way, you get a quality boot made of nice materials but you just don’t pay top dollar for the brand. Take down mercurials and predators etc are a disgusting choke and are so pathetic I would not let those cardboard feet graters near me.

  • well first off the kid should of posted a nike miracle title not superfly. second the person who trashed the kid has no respect just like his parents. and again in the end shoes dont make a player ie. for me i would rather be able to curve a ball with a regular shoe then a predator… that would be real skill. however i do think that the higer priced models use more comfortable materials. and finally if the “online boot community” didnt consist of 12 year old language barriers who think colorful boots make you a better player or mid 20 year olds that think they are amazing and know everything about soccer but yet they dont know what it means to play your position then this football boot post wouldnt even have been posted. and yes i know i cant spell already. and i dont mean any disrespect i just say what it really is. i cant even read s*ccerbible comments anymore they make me sick.

  • Worst dude… Who goes out of their way to troll a little kid who is stoked to be going out and playing in new kick on the weekend. Have more respect for the game. I have no issues with siblings, half my amature football was spent in these kind of boots. I may play in superfly IIs but im not going to be bagging on people that are repping miracale/vistories… Hell i would ask them their opinions on the boots. Football shouldnt be about having hte best gear it should be about repping your skills on the pitch.

  • Nothing wrong with take down boots for us amateurs, but I prefer to just stay a season behind the latest pros and pick up top tier boots on clearance when they’re replaced by a new style or color way. You can’t go wrong with top tier boots at a take down prices!

  • That brings us to the topic of everything else too. Just because the troll doesn’t use/like something, everyone else who use/like something suck.

    It’s not only soccer boots, it’s everything single thing in general.

    Most of these internet trolls don’t even have much social skills in real life. They only “talk” loud hiding behind their LCD monitor and keyboard.

  • I stand by my comments and I am not trolling. Take down boots are shit in every way. They are made of horrible stiff synthetics or cheap leather. Either shop for something on special or buy a good quality boot in a lesser known brand. Only dumb kids who want to copy Ronaldo and have stupid boot colours will buy take downs.

  • @mike is the kid that shows up to all of his games in the most expensive gear to date but his coach has him sitting on the end of the bench because he can’t play worth a sh*t.

  • Great banter on this one!!!

    Boots are boots and I’m a firm believer that talent trumps make and model 100% of the time.

    Having played D-1 college footy in the USA we used to swap out takedown Nike Tiempos in training sometimes because they didn’t retain as much water as the richer upper. Plus, when you’ve got to play many hours a day the major concern is comfort – which takedowns usually provide more of.

    Young and old players alike need to keep buying any boot they can afford and continue to play the game passionately.

  • I wore expensive boots and cheap boots and these boots that do this and that and now all I wear is copas and world cups. I had some predators and the soleplate came away and needed some new boots so I went and bought some world cups. First the studs were another world (this is bearing in mind my whole life I hade played in blades) and the comfort and power were like nothing ive ever worn! Second, I remember I had a bad challenge put upon me and the gut went straight into my ankle and Im sure if it wasn’t for the support these boots offer I would have been out for a bit! So IMO world cups and copas are the best for amatuer levels!

  • I will agree with Mike for a bit – yes, some take down boots may not have the best material. I have (well, had – they’re kinda wasted now) a pair of Esitos and I can honestly say they’re nothing like the Kings I have that have lasted longer and still serve me well.

    BUT.

    I don’t think it’s fair criticising anyone for their choice of boots. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with buying a pair of takedown boots, especially if you:

    1. Don’t play in them too often.
    2. Don’t have that dosh to splash.
    3. Would rather spend that dosh on something else.

    The only reason I have Kings is because I got them for cheaps on PD

    No one is a noob or fake for buying Novas instead of Pures or v5.10s instead of 1.10s. Everyone should have their right to get what they want for their own needs and within their own means.

    I’m sure no civilised person would go around calling another “scum” because the other man bought a Nissam bluebird instead of a Fairlady..

    In any case – I’m sure CR9Dyslexia5yearold would rather the video uploader buy a pair of Victorys than steal his Superflys!

    Oh wait he doesn’t have any. He’s 5.

  • I think the best “cheap” boot you can get is copa’s which are ÂŁ65. I play Uni’s league and a Saturday league and on both at least 40% of the teams wear copas. After copas I see a lot of legends and predators. It’s been a whole season and I’ve seen only 1 guy with SF2 and 4-5 with adizero.

  • This is a really interesting post with great feedback.

    My take is that the troll is a waste of space.

    The important points are about the boots in this post though. There was a good point that said that sibling boots are now as good or better than 5 or 6 year old top level boots. I agree with that. And if someone wants to bag a bargain, the best way is to buy an old sibling version. You can pick them up for peanuts sometimes. These siblings are certainly not bad boots

  • Why don’t more people buy the top of the range boots when they are on sale? For example I picked up a pair if SF 2’s for ÂŁ89 and t90 elites for ÂŁ116. Both are great and yeh, they are last seasons colours but I’m not fussed. My next bargin buy will be the Ctr 360 elites for alot less than the mad current price.

  • I dont have a problem with people buying lower models of football boots and I would never pay over ÂŁ150 for a pair of boots. But I picked up a pair of SF2 for ÂŁ120 and I would never buy a lower down model again. Its not so much all the tech but the smile on your face and the feeling you get from knowing you have a top of the range boot. However people are welcome to buy whatever boot they feel comforatable in.

  • Here in Brazil the majority of the sales are of sibling models, 99% of footy lovers can afford to pay the exorbitant prices of the, let’s say pro models. They can only be afforded by the rich and we know very well that rich people don’t play football here in Brazil.

    Nice one Kyle!

    P.S: I bet that troll who criticized the little kid can’t even play football and rely on his top notch boots to try and improve his game.

  • preds7 i agree copas are the best inexpensive boot… however copas have nothing to do with this posting they will forever be in a league of their own. if boots these days had the durability of copas i would buy so many different pairs that is my one single hesitation when purchasing any boot these days. however i understand the market and know that if boots were as durable as copas production would come to a hault and these companies would take a huge hit cause there would ne no turnover… just like everything these days. all made cheap and triple the price it use to be. perfect example when preds changed to kanga lite or whatever its called. yes there will be inflation but come on 25 percent for a leather that has not even proven itself yet give me a break. one thing i hate about online reviews from kids is that they dont really have much product knowledge… “dont buy these buy these” have you worn both? no so dont tell me what to buy.

  • Anyone who wears a take down boot is cheap. no exception. if you want to get noticed you wear a top end boot. the phsycological advantage is worth the price alone.

  • @Mike
    what does your opinion have to do with a kid who is excited about his boots? My son has a pair of $40 mecurials. But he thinks he has the same boots as CR. Should I tell my 8 year old son that his boots are crap and we can’t afford the real Superflys? My point is, if YOU think they are CRAP, don’t buy them. If someone else buys them, who cares.

  • @ mr Ronaldo’s post

    Quote from the above article:
    But there exists a special kind of person on Youtube (and indeed the internet) known as the Troll (And when football boots are concerned they usually go by a moniker involving ‘CR9/7/Ronaldo’ or any combination thereof).

    lol

  • People buy what they can afford. Actually the likes of adidas F30 ( F50 tunit series) are exceptionally well made. I found it more comfortable than the f50s so no complain there. And it is true that the quality of the take-downs are much better compared to the past. Take a look at Diadora LX, not the pro version, it is still made with kangaroo leather, in the past it would’ve been calf skin but of course the price is more expensive, but still it is cheaper than the top model by half. All in all I think the take downs deserve more credit than most people give them for. I will find it interesting to see a professional player put on one of the take downs in a match. (perhaps as Messi did with the F30)

  • I have owned the original nike mercurial superfly and have since dropped “down” to adipure. (yea i know there not the same brand or class) but the cost difference of ÂŁ85 but i will never go back to the superflys. saving the entire price of my new boots i have been able to but two pair of adipure fg and sg models!

  • I have bought over the years the highend boot and his mid-end brother like total 90 laser and total 90 strike and i do that because i use them according to the pitch, if the pitch is great i will use my high end boots if the pitch isn’t i use the other ones but i don’t see any problem, boots are boots and if you have 400 dollar boots and you suck at playing then there is really no difference is there?

  • My first pair of “pro level” boots were the CTR360 maestri IIs…they are comfy, have all the tech, etc. but i only play 1/2 a week…being a student, football is just for fun and if i played for a premier league team or on a professional level then by all means its good, but tbh, there isnt any point spending ÂŁ100+ on boots you would use only 1/2 times a week…if u really want it, or are really talented then go ahead, but if u just like having a kick about with ur mates, or a 5 a side game then don’t, it really isnt worth it…dnt get me wrong, i love my boots but if i was offered a pair of takedowns i wud have no shame in then, they are fine…u get what u pay for but its up 2 u

  • a testament to the ‘Sibling’ models is the F30s that messi wore. anyone bashing the ‘Sibling’ boots obviously don’t know what they’re talking about

  • ah i remember when i started playing soccer i wore take down boots, as a matter of fact my first pair of boots were a pair of nike volants that were 12 dollars and i loved them so much that i still have them to this day (unfortunately too small for me now). but when i started using top level boots it is hard for me to revert back to take downs :/ i like knowing that i have a top quality boot on my feet.

    but there is still a place in my heart for those “sibling” boots and there is no shame in wearing them 😉

  • People only care about what boots you wear before and after the game. Players like Ronaldo or Messi could play in elven shoes, and they’d still be better than 99% of other guys. They do have a psychological effect, like the Michael Jordan quote: “When I look better, I feel better. When I feel better, I play better.” Although, that effect is negligible, and certainly not worth $400. I still remember as a kid when I was stark raving ecstatic over getting the Maradona take-downs, and practicing for hours and hours, until the debilitating blisters set in. I couldn’t have been happier with the Superflys.

    And, trolling a kid who is excited over a new pair of boots? Are you going to wreck his bike and steal his puppy, too? I own the Superfly 2 ( bought at a severe discount, thank god for that vacation and Spain’s crumbling economy), but I’m fairly certain that I’m not going to be suiting up for Madrid in the future, and I don’t think Sir Alex is going to call your name anytime soon. Justin Bieber just received more soccer notoriety than you or I ever will. And he wasn’t even wearing Superflys. In fact, I’ve never once been in the middle of a game, and thought, “ZOMG, their second striker is wearing Adizero Primes!”

    On a side note, I’m a Ronaldo fan ( I know, I know), but I have noticed that all the soccer trolls on Youtube have some sort of CR9/Ronaldo7 handle, lol. I have a special appreciation for the Messi1911Ronaldo79ManU types, though.

  • I also own discounted superfly 2s and they are the best boots I’ve owned. I also own predator x and umbro stealth pro ii. I don’t buy takedown models, but go for discounted top models. I will not even buy vapors now, but I respect that some people can’t afford higher end boots.

  • Sibling boots are fine especially when you are younger with feet sizer 1-5 but when you get into adult sizes the take down models are still in the ÂŁ30-ÂŁ40. I found myself in this situation a few years ago choosing the mercurial talaria iii or mercurial vapor ii which were 55 and 40 respectively. Obviously i went for the older vapors as they were cheaper so you can always find the top end models for decent prices when the newer models come out

  • I meant that instead of buying the most expensive vapors or maestris i could get great value and decent performance from mercurial miracles or trequartistas at a good price.

  • if its leather, i will settle for nothing less than k leathers. soft, durable and long lasting.

    if its synthetic upper, i rather go for the take down models. past experience has shown me, they last longer than their more pricey siblings.. perhaps cos the upper are thinner and softer.

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