Creative Soccer Culture

SoccerBible's Top 20 Football Boots Of 2020

Well, that didn't quite go how any one expected it to, did it? But despite the unprecedented disruption we were still offered up some outstanding boot releases throughout the year, and now, as with every year, we take the opportunity to look back on the best of the bunch, picking out our Top 20 Boots of the Year.

From nostalgic blasts from the past to sublime signature editions and everything in between, while no one can argue with the fact that 2020 has been a bit shit, it has still managed to provide some absolutely cracking boots throughout.

Now before anyone pulls us up on it, yes, you may notice some inconsistencies here when compared with our lists ranking every Predator and Mercurial release of 2020. Why? Because we all have different opinions in the office, and that's representative of society as a whole. So you may agree with this list, you may not, but it is what it is, and what we can all agree on is that there's been some absolute bangers, despite it being a very weird year. So sit back with another turkey sandwich, mulled wine and that box of After Eights and scroll through our list of the Top 20 Boots of 2020. 

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20. PUMA Future Z 1.1 'Teaser Edition'

Neymar's surprise switch to PUMA was certainly one of the year's biggest talking points, and as a subplot to that story, he's now moving from the King into the new Future Z, which launched earlier this month. The bright, bold FuzionFit+ band gave the boot a unique look on the white base. Look forward to seeing more of what they do with this in the new year.


19. New Balance Furon v6 “Neo Flame/Silver”

New Balance started 2020 off with a bang, unveiling the next generation of the Furon – the brand's lightest boot to date. It looked absolutely premium in its APOTY presentation for Sadio Mané, but for its launch it swapped out the gold trim for striking silver flashes. The design saw a new adaptive, lightweight FIT WEAVE stretch upper, which boasts life-long shape retention.

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18. Diadora B-Elite Italia

Premium performance was wrapped up in the most pristine of presentations as Diadora launched the B-Elite Italia Tech – a new generation of comfort that took all the best elements of the brand’s classic boots of the 90s and combined them with modern day technology. Classy and classic.


17. Mizuno Morelia Neo III β 'Revolution Reborn'

Lighter than ever before, the third-generation Morelia Neo was a genuine upgrade on the lightweight leather speed boot. The premium grade and ultra-thin K-Leather was combined with the innovative β knit collar to ensure the perfect connection between foot and boot, and in blackout, it's simply stunning. 

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16. Nike Mercurial Superfly SE11 Sancho

Jadon Sancho became the youngest star to be honoured with his own signature collection from Nike back in August, and the main piece from the range was his very own Mercurial Superfly VII. The design was big and bold and it packed in an abundance of references to South East London and the cultural influences that the young England man grew up with.

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15. New Balance Tekela v3 'Energy Streak'

New Balance kept the good vibes going through 2020, bringing several fresh new colourways across the Furon v6 and Tekela v3. But without doubt one of the most premium amongst them was the 'Energy Streak' colourway of the Tekela, which saw “Neo Flame” and “Mystic Purple” accents popping on top of the textured white upper.

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14. adidas Predator Absolute 'Eternal Class'

Leveraging the extensive archive that's at their disposal, adidas pulled out an absolute beauty from the past for a final flourish this year. A premium presentation, the 'Eternal Class' Predator Absolute was reworked in white leather with gold and black accents to create a luxurious feel whilst still retaining the same on-pitch performance.


13. adidas Predator Mania Tormentor

The Predator Mania "Japan Blue" edition was a modernised version of the boot worn by adidas-contracted Japan players at the 2002 World Cup, which they co-hosted with South Korea – a boot that had an added desirability factor due to its rarity in Europe. Re-releasing the most loved Predator of all time is a pretty route one way to guarantee success, but adidas absolutely nailed this.

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12. Nike Mercurial Superfly CR7 'Safari'

Celebrating the tenth anniversary of Cristiano Ronaldo’s first signature edition boot, the Safari Print Mercurial Vapor Superfly II, Nike unveiled the Mercurial Superfly CR7 Safari in June, bringing the iconic look back into the game for another dose of CR7 signature style. An iconic look executed to perfection.

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11. PUMA Ultra 'Chasing Adrenaline'

Heavily teased ahead of its launch, PUMA unveiled their return to speed with the Ultra, presented in a "Shocking Orange/Black/White" execution, replacing the ONE in the brand's setup. The construction of the Ultra saw a lightweight MATRYXEVO upper combined with an instinctive running spike outsole. This was a big switch up and it ticked all the right boxes.


10. adidas Dragon Predator+

The Dragon Predator was a beast like nothing else you’ve ever seen before. Evolution in the most primal sense, it mimicked the look of the mythical creature, right down to a scaled upper, and the uniqueness didn't stop at the boot itself either. Completing the package was one of the most unique boxes ever, created to simulate a dragon egg. Unreal on so many levels.

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9. adidas F50 X Ghosted 'Memory Lane'

Celebrating 10 years since the 2010 World Cup, adidas produced a very special limited edition design that combined the past with the present. Aptly named ‘Memory Lane’, the limited edition design featured a one-for-one upper of the original “Black/Sun” F50 adizero sitting on top of the new carbon fibre infused X Ghosted soleplate.

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8. Nike Mercurial Superfly Mbappé Rosa

Kylian Mbappé's second signature edition style dropped in August, and it took influence from the 2008 Mercurial Vapor Rosa, a boot that the Frenchman coveted as a youngster. The updated version saw a similar pink wrap to the original joined by a white lightning Swoosh, bordered in silver and leading to the toe. 

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7. Nike Phantom GT 'Scorpion'

Leaning on the power of nostalgia, the Nike Phantom GT got a silver wrap that paid homage to the Secret Tournament, arguably the greatest football ad of all time. Taking centre stage was the scorpion graphic, which was updated to feature the phrases “Secret Tournament” and “Engineered For Skills”, with the silver execution harking back to that iconic ball...

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6. Nike Phantom GT Academy Flyease

Nike revamped their four silo setup in 2020, taking the best of the Phantom VNM and PSN for the Phantom GT. It was a big move for the Swoosh, but even bigger was the introduction of Flyease – the revolutionary new technology that was all about liberation, freedom, and empowerment, levelling the playing field and making the game even more accessible.

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5. Nike Mercurial Dream Speed 003

Inspired by the pure speed of the game, Nike launched the third drop from their Mercurial 'Dream Speed' series in October, with a design packed with graphic elements that characterise quickness. Unlike the last to instalments in the franchise which were reserved for Ronaldo, Mbappé and Kerr, the Dream Speed 3 was worn by a host of youngsters, signalling the shape of Nike's up and coming roster.

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4. Nike Phantom VNM T90 'Future DNA'

Dropping as the third instalment in the ‘Future DNA’ series, Nike wrapped up the Phantom VNM to look like the iconic 2002 Nike Air Zoom Total 90 II. The off-centre, asymmetrical lacing system of the Phantom VNM tied in perfectly with the design of the T90 II, which also featured an asymmetrical lacing system, with the trademark stripe in black leading from the tongue, through the laces, and right down to the toe box.


3. adidas Predator Mutator+ x Human Race

A fresh twist on the classic Predator Accelerator aesthetic, courtesy of Pharell? Oh go on then. Launching as the headline footwear piece from the wider adidas x Humanrace collection, the Predator Mutator took on an instantly recognisable aesthetic with those chunky Accelerator stripes hugging the boot from underneath, all presented in that unmistakable hand drawn look.

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2. Diadora Brasil "Gold"

Pure class, this. Taking the legacy and heritage of the iconic Brasil, Diadora paid homage to the Balon d'Or, an award that Marco Van Basten, George Weah and Roberto Baggio picked up while wearing the boot, wrapping it in an all-over gold presentation. Regal in their presentation, but quite simply, you have to either be some player to pull them off, or be prepared to receive an absolute shoeing for your efforts. Perhaps one for the mantlepiece...


1. adidas X Ghosted 'Inflight Pack'

The launch colourway for the newly revamped X silo perfectly lived up to its newly rebranded name; that translucent Mirageskin perfectly lending a spectral feel to the boot. Then there were the tech upgrades; the Caritex Speedframe with the dynamic carbon fibre plate insert and the vacuum fit experience all lending to what was a quite outstanding new addition to the Three Stripes setup.

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Daniel Jones

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