The Adidas F50 range of football boots is Adidas's signature line of customisable, lightweight boots. First released in 2004, in the build-up to UEFA Euro 2004, the range was released as a successor of the X-Line range and as a direct competitor to Nike's Mercurial Vapor range, which had been released two years earlier. The name F50 (Football 50) is a reference to the year 1954 when the West German national team won the World Cup in revolutionary Adidas boots with exchangeable studs. Adidas decided to mark this occasion with another revolutionary boot exactly 50 years after the event in 2004.
The first F50 was designed by Klaus Tomczak in collaboration with the Adidas Innovation Team (a.i.T). It was noted for its high degree of customisability with three different sockliners, innovative lacing system and lacecover, striking graphic and the material mix of kangaroo leather and reinforced mesh. The design was recognised with the prestigious Red Dot Design award, being chosen as the best product in the Sports & Leisure category. The F50 boot incorporated the innovative “Fusion Frame System” technology. This technology gave players the possibility to individually determine the feel and the performance of their shoes, both according to the conditions during a game and according to their personal playing style. The concept of the shoe provided a boot and three different chassis. Each chassis consists of a special mixture of polymer that adapts in performance and character to the player. The chassis are light for easy speeding up and sprinting. The upper of the F50 is made of comfortable leather and “Engineered Mesh,” a mesh material, offering slim supporting elements for optimised fit as well as stability with very little weight. A covered quick lacing and “single pull system” makes the footwear fit perfectly around the foot. It is the design of a lateral/medial stabiliser and a narrow heel cap that gives necessary stability to the shoe. An innovative X-Traxion “clip in” function facilitates fast exchanging of the lugs for performance with a system.
The F50+ was a 2005 update designed by Rob Cook with a very distinctive "Spiderman" design. The lacing system was more user friendly and the TPU cage improved stability and durability of the mesh. The design had a totally smooth "sock-like" forefoot area for kicking, and was lightweight. The inspiration for the pattern on the outsole came from similar patterns in architecture that use cables and grids. For the boots, it provided a minimal way of creating flexible, lightweight and great fitting support for the players.
The +F50.6 TUNIT is the version that was designed & developed by Matthias Bieling for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. They are the second generation of the F50 with significantly different design and performance. They featured the revolutionary TUNIT technology for the first time and were specially designed for different playing surfaces. These F50s had an even higher degree of customisability than the first generation. They came with three sets of studs: short studs for hard ground, normal studs for firm ground and the long studs for soft ground. The chassis could be switched around between "light weight", "comfort" and "performance". The uppers could be switched around to better suit the player. The studs, uppers and chassis' can all be purchased separately. This feature makes it easy to repair and upgrade the boots. Special uppers are made for the certain weather conditions, including "ClimaCool" uppers for hot weather and "ClimaWarm" for cold weather. There are also full-grain leather uppers for a more traditional touch and feel. The +F50.7 TUNIT was a 2007 update with a different graphic design, lacecover and a sleeker silhouette.
The F50.8 TUNIT was released for UEFA Euro 2008. The most distinctive feature is the translucent heel and sole also known as the "Alles Klar" technology. This improves the fit and stability as well as simplifying the boot making it more lightweight than previous generations.
The F50.9 TUNIT was released on 1 November 2008 and was designed by Sonny Lim. The lacecover was welded on the upper in process that is similar the Adidas Teamgeist ball. This seamless lace cover was supposed to provide an optimal fit and a clean kicking surface. It also featured an engineered lightweight microfiber synthetic AdiGrip upper for a soft, glove-like fit & improved ball touch in wet conditions, and an advanced synthetic lining to keep the feet comfortable throughout the entire game.
The F50i TUNIT was released in of 2009. F50i are the newest installment, released in late May. The first twocolour options are cyan, running white, black, as well as a running white, black.
On 1 February 2010, Adidas launched the F50 adiZero. Their main focus was speed, and the boot's synthetic version weighs 165g (or 5.8oz) with the leather version weighing 175g (or 6.2oz). The launch colourways were: Black/Sun, Sun/Black/Gold and Chameleon Purple, and each colorway came in a Leather and Synthetic version. There is no more TUNiT system on this boot which was used in the past 5 models, although there is a hybrid version which is similar to the TUNiT system. Diego Forlán first debuted the boots on field in the Europa League Final against Fulham, where he scored both Atletico's goals in their 2-1 AET win.
F50 adiZero Prime
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F50 adiZero mi-Coach
The F50 adiZero mi-Coach was first released in late 2011 and it features the new mi-Coach match analysis technology which gives you feedback on your performance. The boot was marketed as a "football boot with a brain." Mi-Coach is a three part system including a stride sensor, a heart monitor and a receiver. It is essentially the ultimate digital training tool letting you track and upload performance data including speed, maximum speed, number of sprints, distance, distance at high intensity levels and time.
F50 adiZero miCoach II
The F50 adiZero mi-Coach was first released in December 2012 and it features the successful mi-Coach match analysis technology as with the previous adiZero generation. The boots major feature is the engineered 1.5mm thick SPRINTSKIN upper which delivers supreme touch, control and comfort. The synthetic boot weighs 165 grams and the leather edition weighs 236 grams. A textured SPRINTWEB on the boot aims to give additional control, sorting out a problem area for synthetic boots. The SPRINTFRAME adds superior traction and grip.
F50 adiZero miCoach III Messi Edition
Adidas are capitalizing on their lead icon and bringing fans even closer to Leo Messi, by launching a new signature adizero f50 Messi boot. The look and colours are inspired by the player and add to the ongoing success of the adizero range.As the world’s best footballer continues to break records and win international accolades, adidas football have bestowed upon Leo Messi an all-new signature colourway. The f50 adizero shoes are the tools of a fearless player, agile and lightning quick, Messi rides challenges and has one ultimate aim on the pitch; to create and score goals for his team. Now fans can take a step closer to their hero with the adizero f50 Messi, part of the new Messi Collection range of boots and apparel.The Sprintskin is a 1.5mm thick layer made from DUALMAX synthetic with exclusive leather grain optic that allows the boot to be lightweight whilst maintaining a natural feeling between boot and ball, tailored for Messi’s needs. Sprintweb is the 3D printed texture on the surface of the boot that allows for exceptional ball control at speed and also provides the supple but stable construction. The final layer of boot construction is the Sprintframe, a strong but lightweight lower section that offers players a perfectly balanced boot. The new adizero f50 Messi combines revolutionary technologies and precision engineering with every aspect of the boot design based around making the wearer as fast as possible on the football field. At only 165g, the adizero f50 Messi is one of the lightest shoes on the market.
Messi has had two signature boots now from Adidas: one red and white, and the other blue/purple/red/pink. These newer boots feature Adidas' Sprintweb around the bottom of the boot. On the instep, the boot features a leather like feel, while on the rest of the boot, it is purely synthetic. These boots also have a clothing collection that comes with it, such as a training jacket, shorts and more.
F50 adiZero Samba Pack
For the event of the 2014 World Cup, Adidas has decided to make a pack out of all their silos, and are calling it the Samba Pack. The boots are all very bright, representing the color and zest of Brazil, the hosts of the Cup. The F50 are the only silo to be released in two colorways in the Samba Pack. These are the Solar Blue/Running White/Solar Zest and the Solar Zest/Black/Blast Purple. This update to the adiZero features new SpeedTraxion studs and SpeedFoil heel. SpeedFoil is a revolutionary material that combines lightweight, softness and durability for a comfortable, yet locked down heel fit. It has the SpintSkin, SprintWeb, and SprintFrame that Adidas has used in the past. However, Adidas has introduced a new technology that they are calling DribbleTex. DribbleTex is a raised pattern on the vamp that improves ball control in both wet and dry conditions. Weighing in at only 5.8 ounces, this is one of the lightest boots on the market. This boot is endorsed by Lionel Messi, Arjen Robben, Robin Van Persie and several other Adidas star athletes.
- Adidas Predator range of football boots; adidas' "power" boot.
- Adidas adiPure range of football boots.
- Adidas Nitrocharge range of football boots; adidas' "energy" boot.
- "Adidas F50i TUNiT Released". Soccer Cleats 101. Archived from the original on 9 June 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-03.
- "Adidas F50 Adizero Review". Soccer Cleats 101. Archived from the original on 12 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-06.
- "Adidas Adizero: Leather vs Synthetic". Soccer Cleats 101. Archived from the original on 11 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-07.