COS gets to grips with new boots, awful pitches, Kaka and extreme soreness.
CaughtOffside were invited by those nice people at Adidas to attend a number of events to commemorate the launching of the new Adidas adiPower Predator Football boots, events that involved meeting fellow internet folk, a number of football A-listers and taking part in a football match that resulted in severe bruising for our COS representative.
After enjoying the lovely hospitality at Stamford Bridge we took our seats for the seemingly meaningless but hugely entertaining draw between Chelsea and Newcastle United, during which a number of those on show were indeed wearing the latest Predator boots that we would test out the following day.
We were then given the pleasure of the company of Salomon Kalou who seemed all too pleased to interact with us as a group even after the incessant replications of his famous ‘waving hand in front of face’ celebration. The Ivory Coast international appeared relaxed to meet a group of blogger types who were not going to grill him over his possible intentions to leave in the summer, clearly we were much more agreeable company than your typical Fleet Street hacks, at least I would hope that was the case.
The following day we were given an in depth look into the history of the Adidas Predator range by a senior representative of the sporting behemoth and he had a lot to say that was in fact very interesting about the lengthy process that precedes the launch of a new boot range. He discussed in depth the intricacies of the construction, development, testing and marketing that the company went through before the completed product could hit the stores.
He mentioned playfully the quirks and demands that some footballers made in relation to their custom made boots but cleverly refused to name names.
We were then taken to Tooting and Mitcham’s home ground to test the boots in a match situation and we have to admit, and not because we were handed a wad of cash to do so, that the new boots did a great job, a far better job than the amateurs wearing them. Some days later, I still have a Verbal Kint-esque limp.
The super lightweight boots felt very comfortable and often gave the impression that you were not in fact wearing football boots, almost as though you were playing football in slippers (not recommended). Even given the conditions, the Tooting and Mitcham pitch having more holes than bag of PG Tips, you could feel the performance benefits of the boots over our usual gear. The teams on show were a mixture of Adidas employees as well as representatives from Off the Post, Soccerlens, Studs Up, The Football Ramble, EPL Talk, Twofootedtackle and SB Nation and suffice to say it is the taking part that counts rather than the final score, or so we tell ourselves whilst staring teared stained in the mirror.
The following day we got to see the pros face to face at the global launch of the Adidas adi-Power Predator boots in East London. The media masses were present as Kaka, Nani, Robin Van Persie, Jonjo Shelvey, Fernando Llorente, Riccardo Montolivo and Jack Rodwell were ushered out from stage left.
After fielding some surprisingly challenging questions, including one from a reporter who stated quite matter of factly that Kaka had in fact been replaced at Real Madrid by Mesut Ozil, the stars were brought outside to take part in some trick shot tomfoolery that climaxed with a rather bizarre challenge titled Football Paintball, which involved the millionaire footballers firing paint covered balls at children, which may have contravened a number of Heath and Safety regulations but was nonetheless most amusing. Evidence of this event can be seen below.
And then the fun was over. The event was a good chance to meet with fellow football ‘bloggers’ and to schmooze with the stars whilst also getting an insight into the inner workings of the Adidas empire.
Oh, and CaughtOffside were on the side that lost 5-0.