In an age of endless and sometimes needless football boot innovations, sometimes a simple nostalgia pop is all us fans need to be happy.
Sock boots this, no laces that, whatever happened to the standard fold over tongue? After all, it was that era of football boots that were worn for some of the game’s most iconic goals.
Well, adidas have come to their senses and given us exactly what we want and need, announcing a limited re-release of their iconic Predator Mania, in its traditional black, red and white colourway.
A boot silo that resonates with so many different types of football fan, the Predator is perhaps the most famous boot ever, with many suggesting that the early-2000s Mania iteration is possibly the greatest football boot ever. And we’d struggle to disagree.
The Predator Mania was worn by the likes of David Beckham, Alessandro Del Piero, Steven Gerrard and many more legends of the game, and was always on show on the biggest stages of club and international football.
Enthusiasts will remember the famous blue colour that launched ahead of the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea.
Crucially, the black/white/red version of the Mania was what Zinedine Zidane was wearing when he scored his unworldly volley to win Real Madrid the Champions League final in 2002.
A strike that is still considered by many as the greatest goal ever in Champions League final history, it was the Predator Mania laced to the feet of Zizou as he somehow met the ball mid-air and rifled it home on his ‘weaker’ left foot – if you can even call it that – to ensure Los Blancos saw off Bayer Leverkusen.
It’s an unforgettable strike, especially considering the game Zidane pulled it off in. And it’s one that you simply can’t get sick of seeing.
With the 20th anniversary of that famous strike on the horizon, adidas have issued a re-release of the boot, initially limited to 2002 pairs in honour of the year of Zidane’s goal.
Complete with all the features that made the originals so great, the Predator Mania features a black leather upper, the aggressive white striking elements and, of course, that iconic red tongue. We don’t see those used enough anymore.
Set to launch on 11 July, there is still no confirmed retail price for the Predator Mania re-issue, but we have no doubt that they will absolutely fly off the shelves. Have your alarms set and your electronic devices at the ready if you’re thinking about trying to snatch a pair.
A cop for the football purists and boot enthusiasts, the Predator Mania will never not lose its legendary status thanks to the memories that were made by footballing greats who donned the boots, not least Zidane for his regularly majestic exploits in them, and iconic Champions league final volley.
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