Gear

Adidas X Speedflow.1 AG Review — The Best New Boots No One is Talking About?

Has Adidas introduced a real winner in the speed boot category?

Adidas has gone through a sort of reshuffling with regards to its football boot line as of late, with the three-stripe brand cutting their 4 silos down to 3 with the culling of the much-beloved but poor-selling Nemeziz line, despite Messi’s name being attached to them. That said, Adidas has revamped their X model, and injected a little bit of that Nemeziz DNA into the latest edition, known as the X Speedflow.

Rather than just a pure speed boot, the Speedflow, despite the name, is a fairly more dynamic and well-rounded boot. Of course, the FG version has some notably aggressive studs on it, which have been lifted from the Ghosted line from earlier in 2020. However, we decided to slip our feet into the AG variant, providing a much more versatile and ‘softer’ experience, and one which everyone should take some serious note of.

Let’s start at the bottom: the AG version features Adidas’ artificial ground soleplate and stud pattern. This soleplate is a little heavier than the ultralight FG version due to the reinforcement for extra durability on AG surfaces, but the weight difference is nothing to be too concerned about. However, while the weight isn’t dramatically different from the FG to the AG, the studs are significantly different. The Speedflow.1 AG still features Adidas’ AG layout, which is basically an almost-conical stud shape with a slight edge to it, giving you a lot of room to wiggle and pivot, but enough to enhance your push-off or slopping motion — the best of both worlds.

Furthermore, it also features an additional stud on the lateral side and a secondary support stud in the centre (just below the ‘normal’ middle stud). These two extra studs, while subtle, do make a notable difference, as you get little-to-no stud pressure on that niggly part of the ball of your foot, and the studs don’t sink in too deep into the turf due to the extra surface area of the added studs making contact with the ground. The result is an extremely comfortable boot with arguably one of the best firm-grass stud patterns on the market, that (ironically) isn’t made for firm, natural grass.

I’d go as far as to say that these AG boots are better than most FG boots for FG pitches. If you play on natural grass pitches that are in pretty good condition, and want a little bit of respite for your feet and knees from the more aggressive stud patterns out there, the Speedflow AG models should be on your radar.

On top of the great soleplate, you get a synthetic upper that is extremely, extremely soft and pliable and that folds and wraps around your foot like butter. There is absolutely no rubbing or abrasion as a result of how soft it is, and the comfort is further enhanced thanks to a Primeknit sock liner, which was a nice touch from Adidas. This allows a bit of stretching and elasticity when getting your feet into the boots, and a snug, soft feel when the laces are tightened.

Another appreciated addition is two cushioned pads in the heel area, along with a plastic heel counter, which gives your foot stability in the boot while still providing some great comfort to ease the Achilles and avoid any rubbing that players tend to get on the back of their heel and ankle.

While the boots also look very slick and streamlined, the fit is actually very accommodating to most foot-types. They’re a fair bit wider than something like Nike’s Mercurial Vapor line, so you’ll be able to slip a pair of speed boots on thanks to the Speedflow’s wider midfoot area. You won’t get that ultra-tight, socklike sensation that you’d get from Nike’s speedier options, but it’s not far off, and some people prefer that anyway.

All in all, the Adidas X Speedflow.1 is a fantastic football boot that’ll appeal to fans of speed boots, putting a genuine contender against Nike’s superb Vapor 14. The AG model gives more dynamic players and those who find overly aggressive traction troublesome another option to enjoy, and one that combines the best of Adidas’ tooling designed for agility with the high-end weight-cutting Speedflow upper. These two elements blend together into one of the best boots of 2021.

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