In amongst the play off madness of Columbus Crew's penalty shootout victory over D.C. United was a sneaky little first look at a next generation adidas project, as Nick DeLeon debuted the unreleased silhouette.

What we're looking at here is undoubtedly the same mystery boot that Paulo Dybala has recently been training in, albeit a laced version. Dybala has been playing ball by wearing a completely blacked out edition to hide its identity in training, but D.C. United's Nike DeLeon jumped the gun last week by lacing up in the launch colourway of the imminent release in the MLS play-offs. Subtle, Nick.


It would be too early for a new generation of X, Predator and Nemeziz, so all signals here indicate that this boot is the next chapter in the prestigious history of the COPA series. Has to be, doesn't it? The distinctive and cushioned leather upper shows that adidas have executed a modern twist to the iconic series in a debut champagne-esque aesthetic.


The launch is expected to come this side of Christmas, but the fact that an adidas player wore them in such a high-profile game suggests the drop could be far sooner than initially predicted. As for Nick DeLeon, he gave the boot a mixed debut by scoring an outrageous equaliser in extra-time before missing the decisive kick in the penalty shootout.

If, as reported, this is the new COPA front, then it's a definite modernisation of the famous boot. One that will naturally cause initial disruption and discussion, but one that looks to maintain the DNA of that heralded touch and feel. Time to wait.


For now, adidas are keeping quiet. Stay tuned for a first look at the unreleased boot...