Adidas Copa 20.1 Review – When Classic Meets Contemporary

Adidas’ Copa 20.1 aims to marry new and old into something special, but is it a success?

Adidas’ Copa line has gone through a modern revolution in recent years, with the iconic Mundial model staying true to its heritage roots, while the new-age Copa was given the green-light to roll with the times. The new Copa 20.1 does an exceptional job at elevating itself with modern improvements and elements, while still tipping the hat to what makes wearing a Copa special.

The Copa 20.1 features a full-leather upper, which is incredibly soft and notably-padded, even for modern football boot standards. So much so, that the 20.1’s upper is thicker than previous models from the reworked line, but it still manages to feel light, flexible, and moulds to your foot with ease. Whereas modern speed boots feel like you’re playing in slippers, the Copa 20.1 feels like you’re wearing pillows.

The leather upper is beautifully crafted, with ridges in the leather acting as grip on the ball, rather than a textured rubber or synthetic that you’d find on other boots. This really is a boot for fans of classic football footwear, but for ones who want a little injection of modernity too.

And these factors of modern technology come in the form of the synthetic knitted collar, and sole plate construction. The collar itself is small, but provides just enough stretch and hold to provide comfort around that heel and ankle area, the place where leather boots can tend to deliver a bit of chafing or rubbing. The result is a snug feel around the top part of your foot to provide lockdown, but a free and padded sensation around the rest of your foot, ankle, and toe-area.

Let’s be honest, on the pitch, looks are important, and Adidas has introduced a new colourway to the Copa 20.1 as part of the InFlight pack. It’s a predominantly blue tone which is consistent across the upper, with the iconic three-stripes being a clean white, with some grey on the sole-plate to mix it up too. Blue always looks good on leather football boots (just look at the Mizuno Morelia Neo 3 in blue), and this sticks with that notion. It’s a modern look without going into the realm of overly-flashy.

On the flip-side of the boot, Adidas has opted to use their ExoFrame plate, which is actually relatively stiff in comparison to a lot of the synthetic boots on the market, giving you a lot of support and comfort when playing. The stud shape is an interesting one, with Adidas utilising their combo of conical and half-moon type studs, which do end up feeling like a hybrid of blades and round studs, but the feeling definitely leans towards more of a conical-stud feel that can be found on classic boots. The great thing about them is that they allow for pivoting and rotating (avoiding any unnecessary strain on joints), while also having a bit of bite when pushing off in either direction, so if you like the ‘security’ of rounded studs, but do enjoy a bit of ‘grab’ with your foot plants, these are for you.

It’s hard to fault the Copa 20.1, given that the boot is essentially a fine-tuned product of football engineering over the years. There is a little extra room in the toe-box area that those who like a tighter, snugger fit will have to get used to, but this is essentially the Rolls Royce of football boots — classy, comfy, and beautiful to the eye.

The Adidas Copa 20.1 is available from leading sports outlets on online from Adidas’ online store. They retail for R3,299.


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