On Wednesday, Nike Football launched and presented some new key innovations ahead of the world’s largest sporting event this year, the FIFA World Cup in South Africa. First up was the Nike Football Plus (Digital Experience) which allows you to effectively develop new techniques with the added dimension of comparing your growth and progress with players around the world through Facebook and Twitter. Second up was the introduction of the Nke Mercurial Vapor Superfly II with Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo. The highlights of the sleek and highly innovative football boot included a denser Flywire construction for the upper and improved Flywire separation in the forefoot for better movement. The color scheme was chosen based on its ability to offer the illusion of speed and pace. The cheetah-inspired boot also includes a revamped sole unit with 0.72 mm carbon fibre tuned chassis. Adaptable studs can be extended relative to the demands of the pitch. The Nike Mercurial Vapor Superfly II is Nike’s fastest boot ever and one to look for in the coming months as it becomes available on April 1st, 2010.
LONDON, UK (February 24, 2010) – At a global media event featuring footballer Cristiano Ronaldo in London, NIKE, Inc. (NYSE:NKE) today unveiled the Mercurial Vapor SuperFly II, a lightweight boot featuring a new, unique adaptive traction system designed for explosive acceleration. The Mercurial Vapor SuperFly II features a reengineered upper for enhanced fit and ball control for fast feet. The vibrant ultra-violet color boosts visibility on the pitch.
“NIKE, Inc. is the world’s largest and most innovative football company,” said Mark Parker, NIKE, Inc.’s President & CEO. “Our success in the world’s most popular sport is based on creating innovative products and experiences such as the new, incredibly light and responsive Mercurial SuperFly II boot and Nike Football+ which connects the digital and physical worlds of football. These are among Nike’s most advanced products to date and will help write the next chapter for Nike football.”
Traction on demand
In developing NIKE SENSE adaptive traction technology, designers created an adaptive stud that can extend and retract by up to 3mm, based on ground conditions and pressure exerted by the player. Directionally positioned blades maximize cutting and allow for quick changes of direction, while secondary toe traction provides added toe-off power for those first critical steps. The result is a boot that enables greater speed in all directions.
Nike’s design and engineering teams talked with some of the fastest players in the world, who emphasized that acceleration around a defender is just as important as beating him in a straight line. The Nike Sports Research Lab researched the world championship finals in 2006 and found that there were 845 slipping events over 63 games, or roughly 14 per game. Building on these insights, the Nike team collaborated closely with elite athletes including Cristiano Ronaldo, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexandre Pato to create a boot that enables toe-off acceleration and minimizes slippage in game-changing situations.
“For me, it’s all about first-step acceleration, but twisting and turning around a defender is also important,” Cristiano Ronaldo said. “The Mercurial Vapor Superfly II helps me do both, so I can beat my opponent and create scoring opportunities.”
Athlete insights also pointed to the desire for a close fit around the foot without compromising on durability or support. Next-generation Nike Flywire technology incorporated into the boot’s streamlined upper provides a lightweight, strong and more dynamic fit. The carbon composite tuned chassis provides a lightweight platform with traction elements and allows players to stay closer to the ground.
Access to the elite through Nike Football+
The Mercurial Vapor SuperFly II also gives consumers unprecedented access to the training insights of the world’s top players, teams and coaches through Nike Football+. Each pair of boots comes with a unique user code that can be used to unlock trade secrets from inside the game and the next installment of Nike Football+, Master Speed training content on NikeFootball.com.
The Nike Football + Master Speed program provides exclusive access to Brazil national team stars Robinho, Fabiano and Nilmar, putting the power of speed directly into footballers’ hands and their game day preparation. Four camps are available:
• A Pelada – Learn high-speed ways to practice fast, competitive Brazilian football.
• O Brasilerao – Meet the coaches and players of Brazil’s premier club, Corinthians. Experience four authentic drills with top club coaches.
• Na Gringa – Only the best Brazilians go to Europe. Get the inside track on the real difference between the continental games from the superstars who experience it – and apply it to your own game.
• A Selecao –Enter the top secret world of the Brazil National Team’s training hideaway in the mountains, Granja Comery. Experience squad drills and 3-man exercises with a top CBF coach.
Building on the Master Speed program, “Inside the Elite” is a new feature offering exclusive inside access to players. Athletes including Robinho, Javier Mascherano and Zlatan Ibrahimovic offer candid insights on their game and match preparation.
In addition to these Nike Football+ Master Speed programs, footballers will have access to country-specific Nike Football+ activities like training sessions, trial events and player appearances. Nike Football+ is also available as an app for the iPhone and iPod Touch on iTunes®.
The Mercurial Vapor SuperFly II boot is available at retail globally and at www.nikestore.com from April 1st 2010. Nike Football+ can be accessed at www.nikesoccer.com.