Pele Radium Review
The Pele Radium is a shoe that feels great from the first time that you put them on. Something that is tough to find, is a quality leather indoor/futsal soccer shoe, and the Pele Radium certainly fills that void. From right out of the box the full-grain leather upper is nice and soft and is really pliable, making for a shoe that requires no serious break-in time. As far as comfort goes, for an indoor soccer shoe, this is one of the most comfortable that I have ever worn. The heel is lined with super soft suede, as well as a very good amount of padding, so not only are the shoes very comfortable when you pull the laces tight, but your heel will also be locked in place. The rest of the shoe also has a very high quality liner, and makes for a sock-like feel on the inside of the boot. The fit of the Radium is definitely on the wider side. You will notice that there is plenty of predetermined width in the midfoot and forefoot area, so that is definitely a plus for players with wider feet. They will also do some stretching, since they are a full leather boot, so don’t order them with too much extra room. I wore my usual size 9US for review, and found the Radium to fit ever so slightly on the large side. While I think that this is partly due to the width of the boot, I did notice there was just a little extra space in the toe, where on other shoes I would have no space and have my toes right against the front of the boot. If you are looking to order a pair of Radiums and are a wider footed player, I would stick to your normal size, but if you have a slightly narrower foot, like myself, I would not be afraid to go down half a size.
The Pele Radium weighs in at 10.8oz, which is about average for most indoor soccer shoes. When you consider that this a full leather boot, with very nice liners and very high quality materials, the weight of the shoe is pretty good. Personally, I don’t think that the Pele Radium is going to be a shoe of interest to all of the “speed freaks” out there, but for those that it does appeal to, the weight is not going to be an issue.
The Radium is unique in how the sole of the boot is designed. The sole itself is not a soft gum rubber bottom like you get from most high-end indoor soccer shoes, although the Pele Radium Stealth K does have it, you get what is more like a street shoe sole. The sole is also on the thinner side, but all of this is for good reason. The harder rubber allows for use on nearly any type of surface, while not compromising the longevity of the sole or the shoe. You can safely use these shoes on a gym floor, just as easily as you could in the streets. For what the sole lacks in grip, it makes up for in its flexibility, allowing for as much of the sole to be in contact with the ground as possible. If I had to choose the best surface for the Radium, it would have to be the streets, but if you are planning on using these in a gym, as long as the floor is properly cleaned, you should not have any issues.
Like I said earlier, it is tough to find a solid leather indoor soccer shoe, at least one that can match the quality of some of the leather outdoor soccer shoes, but the Radium does a very good job of providing a truly classic leather touch. The upper is a full-grain leather, but is of a very high quality standard that you get from all of the leather boots from Pele Sports. The thickness and feel of the leather is very reminiscent of what many would consider to fit the mold of the “old school” which has stuck around for so many years. It has that quality leather feel, where the touch on the ball is very soft. It is one of those feelings that is difficult to describe, but is undeniably great for a soccer shoe of any kind. There are also some suede sections on the upper that span from the instep of the forefoot, wrap around the toe and ends at about the midfoot on the outside of the shoe. While the suede does not dramatically change your touch on the ball, it does add just a little bit of extra grip on the ball, that smooth leather alone would not provide. It is also worth noting that depending on the colorway, the upper of the shoe will either be a leather finish with suede inserts, like the model I tested, or an entirely suede finished upper. While I don’t think that this will have a major affect on the feel of the shoe, it is worth knowing about if you are on the market for a pair of Pele Radiums.
If you like the feel of nicely padded leather, than you will like the feel of shooting in the Pele Radium. The leather tongue provides some extra padding when striking the ball, which is always welcome on any kind of soccer shoe, and the overall solid construction of boot makes for a great shooting experience. Many might also like the little extra grip that the suede on the instep of the boot will provide.
I have no worries at all concerning the durability of the Pele Radium. It is built from very quality materials and is put together to make a top-notch product. The leather quality is great, the suede inserts at the seams will reinforce all of the edges and will take a ton of abuse and the hard rubber sole will withstand any kind of surface that you throw at it. Part of the reason why “old school” soccer shoes so popular is their ability to last, and the radium will do the same.
The Pele Radium is so interesting in that it is almost completely different from anything else on the indoor market. It is the only indoor soccer shoe on the market, other than the Copa indoor, that is going to provide that same high quality leather feel that you can only get from the classic outdoor boots on the market. They also have a very subtle styling to them, making them a good option for a more casual shoe to wear around, that will still allow you to jump into a pick-up game, should one break-out on the street. They are extremely comfortable, but it is also worth noting that they are definitely on the wider end as far as soccer shoes go, so make sure that you get the right size for the best possible fit. If you’re into classic leather soccer shoes the Pele radium is definitely a shoe that you should take a look at.
Comfort/ Fit 9 out of 10
Weight 7 out of 10
Traction 8 out of 10
Touch 10 out of 10
Shooting 8 out of 10
Durability 9 out of 10
Final Score 51 out of 60 or 85%