With the UK lockdown still in full swing, we take a dive into the archive, with The Nike Mercurial 2.1.
This boot was the update of the legendary Nike Mercurial 1 (1998), and in this black and white colourway, it’s easy to see why so many people loved this boot.
When unboxing them I was amazed. The white lines on the two-tone black upper just popped and looked amazing, which is a refreshing change from the bright colours of today's speed boot market - such as the Superfly 8 which have just released.
The boot is near enough the same as the original Mercurial 1, with only a handful of differences. The first of which is the tongue.
The 2.1 features a shorter tongue, one similar to the ones we saw on the early Vapor series with the ‘tab’ at the top, only you can’t fold it over like on the Vapor 1 to 3.
Other differences include a raised toe-box for a better fit and a redesigned heel counter and inner lining for a more comfortable experience.
This was the first Nike boot to be fully synthetic and is still surprisingly soft, even this many years after they were made in Italy, something I wish still happened for today’s boots.
The upper is called KNG-100 and offers a good fit and feel. On the upper, the duller finish mimics leather, a bit like modern day Kanga-Lite only not as soft and pliable and the shiny finish is a grip coating, allowing for a bit more grip when moving the ball around.
On the bottom of the boot is a TPU soleplate which is responsive and offers a good level of comfort for a ‘speed’ boot, with no stud pressure felt.
Speaking of studs, the stud pattern is a bladed configuration allowing for good grip on pitch, even those not in the best of conditions. It’s not as aggressive as the modern day Mercurial, but still feels great.
The fit of these is just as good as modern day boots. Sure they might not fit ultra tight, but the shape is near perfect and is easily understandable why among the Mercurial fans is considered one of the best fitting of the series.
Not that I expect anyone to go out and a buy a pair to rock on the pitch, but they fit true to size for anyone looking to get a pair.