Light, flexible and perfect for cutting in off a flank, the Adidas X Speedflow might just be the best X boot yet
- Insanely weightless
- Uninterrupted strike zone
- Surprisingly comfortable
- Adidas have had much better colourways
The best football boots for wingers are the Adidas X Speedflow range. The X range – previously the F50 – has led the way in lightweight football footwear ever since it emerged in the mid-2000s.
The original black/yellow F50s were a minimal left-turn for Adi, at the peak of the Predators' powers, but the range has evolved to become paper-thin, super-comfortable and the football boots of choice for the likes of Lionel Messi and Mohamed Salah.
Is this simply the boot of the speed freaks? Or is there to more to the Speedflow than just weightlessness?
Best football boots for wingers: How does the Adidas X Speedflow look?
While the Predator is a particularly showy football boot, these days incorporating spikes and bright, fluorescent hues, the X range is by its very nature very stripped back. The best wingers in the world wear this boot and with a minimal game comes minimal looks.
The Adidas X Speedflow is no different – though it's not as minimal as some X models. The default colourway is Red/Core Black/Solar Red with a white heel; the three stripes are particularly elegant on the Speedflow, with white threads used like vapour trails to extend the Adi logo across the boot, while the Primeknit material looks beautifully futuristic.
Adidas's "Carbitex Speedframe" chassis of the boot itself is very visible with the Speedflow, though – even when its on your foot. While it demonstrates just how thin this boot – not to mention the high-tech feel it has – it gives a much busier base texture to the X than we're used to.
But that's just the Red/Core Black/Solar Red and Cloud White/Iron Metallic/Solar Red colourways. If it's a more minimalist look you're going for, the Core Black/Sonic Ink/Solar Yellow colourway is very sleek indeed.
Best football boots for wingers: How does the Adidas X Speedflow feel on the pitch?
The Adidas X Speedflow doesn't look like it should be this comfortable. These things look they could be a little restrictive – and they sound it too, as there's a suction of air leaving your foot when you put them on. But they feel like tight sock more than a shoe.
The heel is a lot more comfortable than it was on the Ghosted boot too – and the plasticky material will mould around your foot for superb precision when you strike the ball. You might have a slight issue if you have wide feet, however. These boots are very narrow.
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For the day-to-day job of a winger, however, these boots are perfect. Not only are they super-thin and capable of helping you reach top speeds, they flex when you run, bending to your feet as you move. If you're as quick as Salah, that's a much-underrated thing to look for.
But speed is only half of a modern winger's game. The fact that this boot wraps perfect around your foot, uninterrupted with no strike zone, means that you can control a ball with any part of your foot when you're dribbling. If you volley, if you chip and if you cross, you're using the same material of the boot: the strike zone is uninterrupted, making it great for unpredictable shots as well as movements.
Best football boots for wingers: the Adidas X Speedflow verdict?
The Adidas X Speedflow isn't for everyone in terms of looks or feel – but they're easily the best football boots that a winger can buy.
And it's genuinely impressive how much technology Adidas can pack into boots that seem so minimal. The X range keeps on surprising and the Speedflow is yet another hit.
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