Nike Elastico Finale 2 Review
The Elastico Finale 2 is unlike any other indoor soccer/futsal shoe that I have ever worn. Being one of two indoor specific models in the new FC247 line, with the other being the Lunar Gato 2, the Elastico Finale 2 is all about being lightweight and low-profile, while still maintaining a very clean touch on the ball. I was skeptical of the minimalism of this shoe when I first held it in my hands, but after wearing them, I can’t say enough good things.
The entire construction of the Elastico Finale 2 is new and never been done before, but man does it feel good! One of the first things that you’ll notice when you hold the shoe in your hand is the thinness and extreme flexibility of the entire sole. Through the entire front half of the shoe, there is absolutely no midsole, with the only padding being provided by the insole. This gives the shoe a true “barefoot” feel, making for great court feel and tremendous flexibility. I was really worried that the lack of padding was going to be uncomfortable, but I didn’t run into any issues with discomfort at all, and actually came to like the extremely low-profile feel. Granted, the minimal amount of cushioning is not for everybody, but if you’re looking for a true minimalist futsal shoe, than you’ll absolutely love the feel of the Elastico. Through the mid-foot and heel you’ll find a thin, foam midsole, which provides just enough cushion to maintain a comfortable feel when running on indoor court playing surfaces.
The upper is constructed from Nike’s brand new “Nike Skin” synthetic, which combines mesh and fused layers of PU to form an upper that is extremely thin and flexible, allowing for a very comfortable fit, and even a little bit of breathability. Nike Skin is comprised of two separate layers, with the first layer being made from a very thin mesh, knitted is somewhat of a “honeycomb” pattern, while the outer layer is basically a Polyurethane membrane. What’s great about this material from Nike is not only that it provides a great touch on the ball, but it also allows Nike to change the thickness of the upper in any spot they choose. For example, the Elastico Finale 2 features mainly one single PU layer across the entire upper, while all of the areas where the upper meets the sole, has an extra PU layer, which not only reinforces the upper for lateral movements, but also enhances the durability of the boot. Its very difficult to describe the feel of Nike Skin, but the main takeaways are that its very thin, slightly padded and very flexible, offering a feel that I would compare to a sock.
Other comfort elements on the shoe include a lightly padded mesh heel liner, offering a soft feel and secure fit. The lacing system is off-centered, with the laces being pushed slightly to the instep, almost like what you’ll find on the CTR360 line from Nike. It allows for a very secure fit when you pull the laces tight and overall feels very comfortable. The insole is very reminiscent to what was used in the Nike GS Concept models, being made from a very dense, yet soft foam material. It doesn’t seem like much, but it definitely gets the job done in terms of providing sufficient cushioning, given the lack of midsole through the forefoot.
The fit of the Elastico Finale 2 is fantastic. The fit is most comparable to Nike’s very popular Mercurial series, offering a tighter fit overall, but due to the incredible flexibility of the Nike Skin upper, I find the fit to be a little less restrictive, which is a good thing. Just by looking at the shape of the boot, you can tell that its going to have a very snug fit, but of all the tight fitting shoes that I’ve ever worn, I don’t think that I’ve ever worn one this comfortable. The fit across the entire boot is what I would consider to be average to slightly wide, making it a suitable choice for most foot types. The flexibility and softness of the Nike Skin upper allows the shoe to instantly match the shape of your foot, with no break-in time required.
The sizing for the FC247 Elastico Finale 2 is just as you might expect, true to size. I wore my usual size 9US for review, and the fit in the length was absolutely perfect. So, if you’re looking to order a pair for yourself, I would strongly recommend ordering your normal size for the best possible fit.
For the most part, futsal shoes have never really been designed around being lightweight. Of course there are models out there that weigh-in around the 8 to 9oz mark, but by most people’s high standards nowadays and the technological expertise of large companies like Nike, 8oz just isn’t what I would consider to be “pushing the limit”. With the release of the Elastico Finale 2, there is finally a futsal shoe in the sub 7oz weight range! The Elastico Finale 2 weighs in at a very impressive 6.9oz, making for a very lightweight feel both in-hand, as well as on feet. When it comes to lightweight futsal shoes, there aren’t many options out there, but if you’re looking for one of the lightest shoes around, than I would definitely take a look at the Elastico Finale 2.
Traction is extremely important when it comes to futsal, and the Elastico Finale 2 features a fairly unconventional traction pattern. In the forefoot area of the outsole, you’ll find that the traction pattern is split in two, with the medial side featuring a dimpled pattern, and the lateral side featuring a more traditional herringbone pattern. Under the heel, you’ll find the same two patterns, but flipped. Another thing to note about the traction pattern, is that the herringbone section is made up from a slightly softer, translucent rubber, while the dimpled area is made from a slightly firmer, solid rubber.
The concept behind the split traction design is that the dimpled area will provide more grip or a “better” touch on the ball, while the herringbone area is what’s going to provide the majority of the grip. You can definitely tell that the dimpled area of the sole does not provide quite as much grip as the herringbone portion of the sole, but the overall performance of the traction pattern is still very good. The rubber itself is a little stiff from right out the box, so some break-in time is required for the traction to kick-in and start feeling like its supposed to.
On clean indoor courts, the traction is fantastic, offering plenty of grip in every direction. The performance was also very good on slightly dusty and debris ridden courts. On concrete, and other outdoor playing surfaces, you’ll get plenty of traction, but durability may become in issue due to how little rubber there actually is on the sole. Part of what makes the traction so great is the flexibility of the forefoot area, which allows the sole to flex and bend very naturally with your foot, giving you optimal traction no matter which way that you twist or turn.
Overall, the traction pattern performs really well. With that being said, I still believe that there is room for improvement. If it was up to me, I would have made the entire sole from the herringbone pattern featured on the outside half of the sole, and just removed the dimpled pattern all together.
The Nike Skin synthetic upper is what really got me excited about the Elastico Finale 2. As explained earlier, it’s an all-new synthetic from Nike, offering a very unique touch on the ball. The synthetic itself is very thin, but also features somewhat of a dimpled texture, due to the mesh layer under the PU membrane. The upper also features very unique wax finish feel, providing a very slight amount of grip on the ball.
The thin, yet slightly padded upper, offers a very natural touch on the ball. Its tough to compare it to any other synthetics currently on the market, mainly because it offers a feel that is unlike anything else that I’ve ever worn. I would describe it as a barefoot feel, but due to the softness and flexibility of the upper, the upper actually does feel like a second skin! Its an amazing upper that just feels so natural. It fits so well and feels so soft that you forget that you’re even wearing shoes, which is always a good thing. If you’re a fan of thin, lightweight uppers, than you definitely need to try a boot with Nike Skin synthetic.
Striking the ball feels great in the Elastico Finale 2. I found the low-profile of the shoe to really ease the process of getting under the ball when playing in a futsal environment, which is not only great for shooting, but also allows for flicks and passes in tight to be executed more easily. The slightly grippy feel of the upper allows for very solid contact when striking the ball, while the Nike Skin synthetic provides just the right amount of padding to where you still get that barefoot sensation. The simple design and use of quality materials gives the Elastico Finale 2 a great feel no matter what skill is being performed.
The Elastico Finale 2 is technically classified as an indoor soccer/futsal shoe, designed specifically for use on indoor courts. On strictly indoor surfaces, you shouldn’t have any issues at all with durability. The rubber sole holds up well, and because there is very little plastic and foam used on the shoe, there isn’t much that can actually break-down. The only issue that I had with the shoe, was that some of the paint on the Nike swoosh has started to peel, but this has no impact on the performance or longevity of the boot. If you’re wearing the Elastico Finale 2 strictly on indoor courts, you should easily be able to get multiple seasons worth of use out of one single pair.
Should you wear the Elastico Finale 2 as a street soccer shoe, you may run into some wear and tear issues, due to the shoe being exposed to a much more abrasive playing surface. On any kind of concrete or asphalt, the sole will wear away quicker than you might like, and because of how thin the rubber is, it will definitely have an impact on the longevity of the boot. So, if you want to use the Elasticos as street soccer shoes, go for it, just don’t expect them to last quite as long.
The Elastico Finale 2 is one of the first futsal shoes in a while that I have been truly excited about. Between the incredible fit, the Nike Skin upper, the extreme flexibility of the outsole and lightweight construction, there really isn’t anything that compares to this fantastic futsal shoe. I’ve always had trouble finding a pair of indoors that I truly enjoyed wearing, mainly because its tough to find a pair that matches the quality of what’s available on most high-end soccer cleats, but the Elastico Finale 2 changes that completely. This is one of the best indoor soccer shoes that I have personally ever worn, and is one that I can recommend to anybody looking for something new.