Best football boots for strikers 2023: The latest ranges from Nike, Adidas, Puma and more
The best football boots for strikers, as worn by the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland
If you're a penalty box poacher, a false nine or an old-school centre-forward, you'll want to find the best football boots for strikers.
Having the right boots can make a huge difference to a player's game, with certain ranges specifically designed to assist defenders, midfielders and attackers. FFT has been dedicating itself to categorising designs to make boot shopping easier for you. If you're simply looking for the best football boots out right now, be sure to check out our other reviews.
But here you'll find the best football boots for strikers...
Nike Zoom Mercurial Superfly 9 Elite
Most weightless Mercurial boots ever
Colourways: White/Off Noir/Coconut Milk, Black/Dark Smoke Grey/Summit White/Volt, Barely Green/Blackened Blue/Total Orange, Yellow Strike/Barely Grape/Coconut Milk/Sunset Glow | Studs: Firm ground, soft ground, multiground, artificial grass, indoor, turf | As worn by: Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Beth Mead
The latest in the peerless Nike Mercurial range, the Air Zoom Superfly IX, dropped in July 2022 and was given its first run out at the Women's Euros. They'll be worn this season by some of the biggest stars in the men and women's game, including at Qatar 22.
Aside from looking drop dead gorgeous, in FFT's opinion at least, the Air Zoom Superfly IX is among the lightest boots on the market and offer unbeatable traction – making them ideal for speedy attacking players. The almost sticky skin on the upper is designed to assist with your touch, passing and shooting, while also offering decent protection.
There's a new three-quarter-length articulated "Zoom Air bag" on these ones, along with a newly designed Vaporposite+ upper, which features a "Speed Cage" design. Basically, they're tighter, sleeker and more durable than ever before.
Adidas X Speedportal
Boots straight from the feet of Mohamed Salah – via Rick and Morty
Colourways: Solar Green/Core Black/Solar Yellow, Core Black/Solar Red/Solar Green | Studs: Firm ground, soft ground, artificial grass, turf | As worn by: Mohamed Salah, Alessia Russo, Lionel Messi
Released in conjunction with a specially made Rick and Morty short, the Adidas X SPEEDPORTAL boots are a natural evolution from the last X model while upgrading on the look, feel and comfort of the model.
We were blown away when they landed. These are the best-looking Xs in years, with a freshly-designed heel and the brand-new, textless Adidas logo. Bravo.
Nike Mercurial Superfly VIII Elite
Last season's efforts but by no means old news
Colourways: Football Grey/Light Marine/Laser Blue/Blackened Blue, Black/Metallic Silver/Cave Stone/Metallic Gold, Chlorine Blue/Marina/Laser Orange | Studs: Firm ground, soft ground, multiground, artificial grass, indoor, turf | As worn by: Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Beth Mead
Last season's Nike offering, but still a cracking choice. In our Nike Mercurial Superfly 8 football boots review, we praised the lightness of these boots in particular. At just 190g, this is among the lightest boots ever, despite being made from a material that does offer genuine protection and durability. They're so noticeably light, that even FFT (not quite blessed with the speed, say, of a young Theo Walcott) felt the difference in a game situation. They also offer great traction thanks to a unique stud pattern and are tight on the foot without any chance of coming off.
The latest Mercurial Superly also boasts 'Anti-Clog Traction' technology. So if your Sunday league pitches are susceptible to heavy rainfall and poor drainage, they could be a good option – no more stud plates caked in mud after the firs five minutes of a game.
Lastly, they look the part, come in a huge range of colours AND you can customise your own pair on the Nike store if you're really up for pushing the boat out.
Nike Tiempo Legend 9 Elite
Comfortable, versatile and stylish
Colourways: Black/Iron Grey/Black, Team Red/Mystic Hibiscus/Bright Crimson/White, Grey Fog/Sapphire/Volt, Black/Anthracite/Metallic Gold/Metallic Dark Grey, Guava Ice/Sunset Glow/Yellow Strike | Studs: Firm ground, soft ground, multiground, artificial grass, indoor, turf | As worn by: Virgil van Dijk, Thibaut Courtois, Harry Kane
While the latest Tiempos have been snapped adorning the feet of a host of players in varying positions, FFT's Nike Tiempo Legend 9 football boots review points out the fact that these are, in fact, boots built for strikers. That's because, while extremely comfortable and durable, they're among the lightest on the market, weighing in at only 207g.
They feature a number of other nifty little gadgets, including memory foam and touch pods, designed to specifically help attackers shoot, dribble and control the ball. The chevron studs have been specially designed to add traction, helping attacking players change direction more easily – perfect for bursting past defenders.
This is a stunning all-round boot, and one any attack-minded players should consider adding to their toolkit.
Puma Future Z Lazertouch
Proper leather... but still light
Colourways: Black/White/Gold | Studs: Firm ground, multiground, artificial ground, soft ground, turf | As worn by: Neymar
In our recent Puma Future Z Lazertouch football boots review, we praised the authentic leather used in boots worn by some of the nippiest wingers in world football. Neymar's version of the Future Z are lighter still, made by synthetic material as opposed to the leather on the Lazertouch, so you have a choice.
The boots are a fantastic fit, offer superb traction, look stunning and are light enough to make you feel as if you're wearing carpet slippers. The Future Z is geared towards attacking players specifically.
Umbro Velocita VI Pro
The great British football boot of our time
FFT was positively stunned by how light they are when putting together our Umbro Velocita 6 football boots review.
Weighing in at 190g – the same as Nike Mercurial Vapours – this is an area where this boot sits comfortably alongside the absolute best in the business. During training and games we took these out for, we half expected to look down and find we were wearing crocs. Fortunately, what we found down there was one of the best-looking boots on the market right now.
You'll absolutely fly past opponents in these, safe in the knowledge that if you are caught, you'll be well-protected by the tough shell and textile. There are some drawbacks, including a lack of flexibility in the soul. But check out our review to find out more about the pros and cons.
New Balance Furon V6+ Pro
New Balance's worthy competition to the big boys
Colourways: White/White/Orange, 'Impulse', Black/Alpha Pink, Raheem Sterling Jamaica Edition: Yellow/Green, White/Alpha Pink, Bleached Lime Glo/Citrus Punch, Black, Cobalt | Studs: Firm ground, soft ground, artificial ground | As worn by: Harvey Elliott, Bukayo Saka, Raheem Sterling
Lightweight, colourful and with touches of blue and red across them that just look beautiful, the New Balance Furon V6+ Pro are an absolute triumph. These boots will give strikers the edge in a foot race since they're so weightless – but they're also comfortable, too.
These are the boots that the likes of Sadio Mané and Bukayo Saka wear. Perfect for a speedster... and they look the business, too.
How we test football boots
Here at FourFourTwo, our boot testing procedure is all about getting boots on our feet and personally trying them out in kickabouts, training sessions and matches. Our writers test each pair over a number of weeks, in various playing conditions, in order to get a proper idea of what they're like on a football pitch.
This is the best way to find out if boots are better suited for firmer or softer ground, what level of traction they offer and how else they're geared towards improving a player's game. We're passionate about football boots and regularly attend launch events and Q&As to get as much information as possible from manufacturers and designers before we begin.
All of our reviews are honest (despite working with brands, nobody can "buy" a good review from us) and we always have real footballers in mind when giving recommendations.
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Ed is a staff writer at FourFourTwo, working across the magazine and website. A German speaker, he’s been working as a football reporter in Berlin since 2015, predominantly covering the Bundesliga and Germany's national team. Favourite FFT features include an exclusive interview with Jude Bellingham following the youngster’s move to Borussia Dortmund in 2020, a history of the Berlin Derby since the fall of the Wall and a celebration of Kevin Keegan’s playing career.
- Mark WhiteStaff Writer