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Sam Borgel
Ms. Turner
AP/IB Lit
10 December 2013
Have adidas soccer cleats improved a players performance?
Dear fellow soccer enthusiasts,
I have gathered you here today to discuss a question that has existed since the invention
of the soccer cleat. The first soccer cleat was created five hundred years ago, the only shoe fit for
a king, and it was created for King Henry the eighth. For four shillings, roughly one hundred
dollars today, Cornelius Johnson made a clumsy leather boot that weight five hundred grams,
and it doubled in weight when it was wet. Since this boot was born, there have been innovations
in every part of the cleat, such as weight, comfort, lacing, stud pattern, sole plates, grip, and even
eyelet improvements for a flatter surface when contacting the ball. Now, all these improvements
are in question as to whether they actually improve a players performance, but Adidas ensures
that you will become a better player if you wear the three stripes on your feet.
We, Adidas, first made our impact in the soccer cleat market in 1979 when we released
the Copa Mudial. At the time, we were brainstorming of a cleat that would transform the way
professional soccer players play soccer. We first started looking for a material that would last, is
comfortable, and is inexpensive. There was no other place to look than kangaroo leather. We
then added additional leather at the heel which improved stability and durability. Till this day we
are still improving this timeless cleat. The biggest change we made to this cleat was adding
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screw-in studs for soft ground as well as hard ground, and artificial turf. The next big cleat line
that was invented was the F50+. This cleat was known for its extreme customizability with three
different sock liners, innovative lacing components, and the combination of kangaroo leather and
mesh. We also incorporated the Fusion Frame which allowed a player to decide the stud type to
determine the feel and the performance of their shoes, according to the conditions of the field
and their personal playing style. Then, for the two thousand six world cup we released the next
generation F50 called the F50.6 TUNIT. The biggest change in this boot was the integration of
the TUNIT system. These boots came with an even higher degree of customization. Players were
able to change the stud length depending on the weather conditions and also they could switch
out the upper depending on whether they wanted a more durable shoe or a more lightweight
shoe. The F50.8 was fairly similar to the F50.6, but the F50.8 featured a translucent heel called
the Alles Klar, all is clear in German. This translucent heel improves the fit and stability as well
as contributing to making the boot lighter.
On February 1
st
2010, the soccer cleat market changed, and it was initiated by none other
than Adidas. With the main focus being on speed, Adidas released the F50 AdiZero. The boot
only weight one hundred sixty-five grams, with about a one hundred gram difference between
the previous year model and this one. Players are now able to run faster, and beat opponents to
the ball, allowing their team to win. We decided to drop the TUNIT system and start with a
whole new cleat. We started off with a synthetic upper called Sprint Skin. This technology
allows for a lighter cleat and a better feel of the ball, which allows for better ball control. We
then incorporated another new technology called Sprint Frame, the base of the cleat. Sprint
Frame allows for cutting down on weight while not sacrificing stability. Also, we used internal
TPU bands within the cleat to increase support and stability in both medial and lateral direction.
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TRAXION FG outsole was also added for a better grip on hard, natural surfaces. This cleat is
and will always be the cleat that changes the game.
Now, we move on to Adidas biggest competitor in the soccer market, Nike. The first
time the swoosh was used on a Nike product was in 1971 when they created The Nike
soccer cleat. This cleat was a very standard one, and did not feature any technological features on
the cleat. It comprised of standard kangaroo leather upper with a very basic lacing pattern, and
also a sole plate that copied the Copa Mudial. Then, up until the design of the Nike Tiempo,
Nike did not release any more soccer cleats into the market. The first Nike Tiempo was seen in
the 1994 FIFA World Cup in the United States, and this boot was instantly known for its
comfort. Other than that this boot was not game changing at all, and actually hurt the Nike brand
because these cleats were cheaply made and did not last as long as Adidas cleats. Again, Nike
waits a long time to release another Nike Tiempo cleat. In 2007, Nike finally releases the Nike
Tiempo II. They add a bit more technology to this cleat, by adding a different stitching pattern, a
different stud pattern, and also a lacing cover. Since this cleat Nike has released three different
Nike Tiempos, all claiming to be better than the rest.
Though Nike says that their cleats are improving, are they really? It took Nike thirteen
years to release two soccer cleats, and there are only three improvements. Adidas is the way to
go when buying soccer cleats. We have been a powerhouse in the cleat market since our release
of the Copa Mundial in 1979. Our cleats last long, are technologically better, and we have more
experience than Nike.


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Bibliography
Barbier, Eric. "Adidas F50 AdiZero TRX FG." ProductWiki. ProductWiki Inc., 24 Nov. 2005. Web. 11
Dec. 2013.
Barzon, Felipe. "Nike Tiempo II." Footy Boots. Felipe Barzon, 22 Nov. 2007. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.
"Football Boots Speed Boots Face Off: Adidas F50i TUNiT vs Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly
04/07/09." Speed Boots Face Off: Adidas F50i TUNiT vs Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly
04/07/09. SoccerBible, 4 July 2009. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.
"Soccer Shoe History." Epic Sports. EpicSports Inc., 14 Oct. 2003. Web. 10 Dec. 2013.
Various. "Adidas Copa Mundial." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 12 May 2013. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.
Various. "Adidas F50." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 12 July 2013. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.
Various. "Nike Tiempo." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 23 Nov. 2013. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.