Puma King 2013 Review
We love Puma boots at Goals and Gear, and we got pretty excited when the 2013 version of the iconic King was launched with a fresh new look.
The Puma king is one of the most iconic retro boots on the market, and every year Puma do their best to update the retro classic to fit the modern game. Lets start off with the colour of the boot. The 2013 king has launched in a bright yellow colourway and a black one. The yellow is extremely eye catching – although from a far it can be easily confused with the CTR360 launch that many players are still wearing. It is a bold move from Puma, but allows younger players to get excited about a retro boot – while keeping loyal fans happy with the black/white/red colourway.
The styling of the boot is really fantastic in my view, I love the contrast of old and new – which flows well throughout the boot, and the technological advances they’ve put into this product improve it greatly, The upper of the boot is one of the softest leathers I’ve ever experienced on a brand new boot – honestly it feels like one of the display boots in a shop that has been poked, prodded and squeezed by countless customers – super super soft, well done Puma. The result is a fantastic touch of the ball on the pitch, and a resilient upper which can easily take a few knocks, I really felt defenders would be incredibly comfortable with the boot.
The boot weighs in at 237 grammes which is a comfortable weight for any central midfield or defence player. The boot is extremely comfortable and fairly wide in fit, I’d also say it fits pretty long – for me it was a fairly similar fit to Nike’s Vapor 8.
The outstep of the boot also features a great textured Puma Formstripe – which I found was fantastic for receiving heavy passes on the outside of the foot and offered a little more grip on the ball when dribbling on the wider part of the foot. It is also made of a much more solid synthetic than I’ve seen on normal Puma boots – and its really fantastic because it helps to give the boot its shape – while also keeping it. A lot like Nike’s flywire – while being a lot less restrictive on your foot’s movement.
The king also features a great area for hitting knuckleshots off, with the leather meeting synthetic you’re guaranteed an additional cushion which allows you to strike those knuckle balls with a lot more force – while the added stitching allows you a great target zone.
One of the most exciting things about this new king is the soleplate. Finally Puma have introduced a mixed soleplate to the range, and what a fantastic mixed plate it is. Puma have mixed both conical and square moulded studs on the boot in strategic zones to allow optimum foot movement, comfort and acceleration – I honestly can’t sing their praises enough on this – its fantastic. The chunky studs are also semi-triangulated which I found worked really well for me with turning and moving off. The rear studs of the boot are also noticeably longer than the forefoot ones – allowing you comfort and solidity if you’re stood still for a long period of time – while the shorter ones allow for quicker acceleration cross short distances. My only criticism of the new soleplate is that is not as flexible as that on the King 2012 – which was incredibly flexible across the forefoot – but slight reduction allows for a more responsive relationship with the pitch.
My main frustration with this boot comes in the form of this big white area. I was slightly disappointed to see the instep of the boot is synthetic. I would have loved a solid leather zone where I can trap the ball and play passes off. Instead Puma have opted to go with a fairly hard wearing synthetic, which creates quite a lot of padding between your foot and the ball. Its great if your team play heavy passes, and so do you – as this will give you a nice cushion between your foot and the ball, but if you play short softer passes this may cause you to over play the ball. For me, its a shame Puma didn’t continue the leather across this area – or even a leather synthetic.
The heel counter on the boot, on the other hand – is fantastic, and probably one of the best on the market right now. it comfortably cups your heel – while also offering you a lot of support from nasty tackles. It also gives the showboater a chance to play some really nice back-heeled passes off the solid plastic cup. It also finishes nice and low, which gives your achilles a lot of freedom – while still being protected by the perforated leather guard at the top of the back of the King.
Lets talk about the tongue of this boot. Normally, nobody really pays much attention to a boot’s tongue in design – but Puma really have. The result is pretty fantastic, Puma have created a honeycomb-like texture across the tongue – which creates padded rivets under your laces – which is incredible for shooting through your laces, as it gives you just a little extra padding – to add a bit more power. This would also be fantastic for defenders who like to hoof the ball out of their half.
As you can see in the photo above, Puma have also introduced two plastic lace holes across the boot, this is a really cool innovation – and one I’d guess that comes from their Running department. The plastic lace holes are in the areas that most people’s foot arch will push out against – so this ensures your boot retains a tight fit and the right shaping – as this is also where the leather and synthetic cross over. However – this will mean there is a little bit of a lack of flexibility on that part when dribbling – but anyone with a high arch will really appreciate this innovation.
Here’s our unboxing video of the boot
Overall, I’d say the King is an ideal boot for centerbacks, tough central midfield and defensive midfield players.
The King 2013 SG in Yellow is available for £129.99 from ProDirectSoccer now