Under Armour Blur Pro Review
Why are soccer shoes designed for straight ahead speed when our game is all about cutting and crossing. With the Blur, Under Armour changes the way we think about soccer speed. Light enough to outrun anything, but stable and secure enough for a full match of starting, stopping, cutting, escaping and full-on attacking. Perforated lightweight performance microfiber for optimal breathability and moisture control. UA's Micro G cushioning and 4D foam forms to the foot and provides optimal comfort while reducing cleat pressure. Anti-bacterial footbed increases stability and adds shock absorption. Lightweight PEBAX outsole features a lateral outrigger to provide support for quick directional changes. Outrigger also allows for wider forefoot cleat placement, enhancing underfoot stability.
The Blur Pro is UA's newest "speed" boot that is not a bad shoe, but it doesn't seem to do anything better than any other speed boots on the market. In terms of fit, this shoe fits really well. The shape of the boot is very much like that of a Nike Vapor, but with a lower toe box. Once you pull the laces tight, the shoe wraps your foot really nicely. One thing that I did find a little bit strange was how shallow the lacing system was. It doesn't go as far down the foot as I would have liked, but in the end, it isn't much of an issue. The heel is lined with a textured vinyl-like material, similar to what was in the heel of the original adizero. It definitely does grip your heel, but depending on how sensitive you are to blisters, you may have some issues. My main complaint about the comfort of this shoe would have to be the 4D foam insole. It is very soft and fairly thick, so every time you step down it compresses. The problem with this is that your heel moves along with the insole, which can make for some pretty bad rubbing in the heel area. It is just way too thick of an insole for a soccer shoe. If you replace the insole with something thinner, than the problem seems to be resolved. One thing to note with the fitting of this shoe is that they fit small. I wore a size 9US for review, but I definitely could have moved up to a 9.5US, so definitely order a half size up.
This is another questionable decision by UA in terms of creating a speed boot. 8oz has more or less become the standard maximum weight for what is supposed to be a lightweight boot. This shoe weighs 8.6oz, which is not heavy at all, but for a speed boot, it doesn't give that sense of lightness that you might feel with a lighter boot.
This is where I think UA gets it right. The Blur Pro sports a very unique sole plate that seems to have taken from a mixture of all of the current and past Vapor stud patterns. In terms of being able to accelerate and make quick changes of direction, you feel tremendous grip and stability. The wider forefoot really does make for added stability, as you don't feel and rolling or tipping when making quick changes of direction, if you know what I mean. The only thing that I would say is that they will not provide great traction in softer ground conditions because the studs are a little shorter.
This is another area where UA makes yet another strange decision. The upper of this shoe is not very thin. When you imagine a speed boot, you expect a shoe where the upper is trying to imitate the feel of playing barefoot. Unfortunately, a thin upper is not what you get. Instead, you get a very soft upper that seems to be made of several layers. Because of all these layers, touches on the ball feel very padded. I would describe the feeling as wearing two or three pairs of socks when touching the ball. Overall, the upper does not feel like something you would expect from a high -end boot.
Because this is a bare bones boot, shooting is similar to any other cushioned upper. The tongue of this boot is very thin, so if you are striking the ball with the laces, the feel of shooting barefoot will be there. This shoe really doesn't offer any shooting gimmicks, but neither do any other speed boots.
The durability of this shoe shouldn't really be an issue. The sole plate and studs are pretty much all one piece and the upper doesn't have any seems or stitching, so there is very little that could go wrong with the shoe. I would say that this shoe is up to par in terms of build quality in comparison to Nike and Adidas and will surely last at least an entire season.
You do get some extra little protective elements with this boot that you do not get most other speed boots. There is a hard plastic heel counter and because the upper is a little bit thicker, getting stepped on shouldn't hurt as much as it would in an adizero.
UA is still establishing themselves in world of soccer. They have not yet created a boot to compete with Nike's Vapor and Adidas' adizero, but they have made an attempt to create there own innovations instead of simply copying their competition. The traction and fit of the shoe is very good, and given a chance, this shoe may surprise you. It still doesn't compare to the current Nike and Adidas speed boots, and I can't really recommend them. UA takes a lot of criticism for their soccer shoes, but they are a very innovative company that is improving with every model they release. Give Under Armour another year or two, and their shoes will strong competitors in the soccer market.
Comfort/ Fit 7 out of 10
Weight 5 out of 10
Traction 9 out of 10
Touch 5 out of 10
Shooting 7 out of 10
Durability 7 out of 10
Protection 7 out of 10
Final Score 47 out of 70 or 67%