8th June 2012 – The adidas Predator boots have been synonymous with delivering more power, better control and accuracy for the players wearing them. Since its incarnation 18 years ago (in 1994), the Predator series have undergone a tremendous change and upgrade in terms of its design and its focus on the technical aspect of it.
Well, adidas recently unveiled its latest Predator boots – the Predator Lethal Zones. Being a football enthusiast myself, I had the opportunity to try out these boots and give it a go. At first glance, the boots do look weird with all the orange stripes surrounding the ocean blue base coloured boots. However, these “3D stripes” are said to be specifically located at 5 areas or “zones” on the boots which players such as Xavi and Nasri have identified as the spots where they have most contact with the ball. With the 5 “lethal zones” being Sweet Spot, Drive, Pass, Dribble and First Touch, question is – Do these stripes really matter or are they just gimmicks?
To understand more about each and individual zones, you can check out this VIDEO. But on a personal note, after playing multiple futsal games with it, 3 zones really stood out for me – the First Touch, Pass and Sweet Spot.
Really really nice. The ball was like stuck on my boots. Trapping the ball was a sublime and receiving fast passes had a nice touch to it.
With the slightly large padded pass zone, passing was a peach! Its large contact surface also provided better control and precision passing. In simple terms, putting the ball where you want it to go to.
That little raised ribbed section at the part where you use to curl the ball was undoubtedly sensitive. It provided more power BUT at the same time, it curled the ball inwards a little more. A double edged zone i would say as you would have to get used to its sensitivity.
As for the DRIBBLE and DRIVE zones, I did not particularly utilize them as much during my futsal games. Perhaps its my playing style during the games or simply I am not the kind who dribbles and dazzle much in that small confined pitch. Ultimately, I feel that this boots are more suited for the midfield and striker positions where pin point accuracy and power is crucial. As compared to the F50 adizero Prime that I have been using before this, the Predator Lethal Zones are heavier in nature of course they both are in a different league.
Although, at the end of the day, it is player who controls how he performs on the pitch, the Predator Lethal Zones boots act like the cheat sheet. It provides better control and more power at every touch of the boots. Personally, I am not a fan of its design (I like my boots flashy, yet simple) as I would have preferred the 5 zones to be blend in with the boot’s base colour. Nonetheless, the new synthetic upper called the Hybrid Touch allows the players to still maintain the suppleness of leather but has 4 times less water uptake and is 40% lighter.
With the retail price set at $309 (last checked at the Adidas outlet at Causeway Point) it is rather on the pricey side of boots. There is however, a lower grade model which is priced at $169. The texture of the ribbed zones are not as superb as compared to the higher grade one though. Duhh? I cannot say about its performance though because I have not tried them out. That is not how we roll here.
All in all, the boots excelled in its first touches and passes giving the player a slight edge over its opponents. A rather technical pair of boots, the “lethal zones” increase the sensitivity of the touches one makes with the ball. It is a pair of boots worth investing in if you are one of those regular weekend football warriors and/or playing for your school team. I would also advise you to try them on with socks and get a half-size bigger for your feet if you want to avoid blisters. 🙂
Till then, Guten Tag! 😀
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