Take a look at Nike’s 20th anniversary “What the Mercurial?” football boots

When the Nike Mercurial line debuted in 1998 everything was shocking; the colors, materials, even the athlete who inspired it, were truly beyond any preconceived expectation.

Twenty years later, that element of shock and awe hasn’t dissipated. After all, the Mercurial has regularly shifted and constantly evolved to follow through on the promise it was built to deliver: faster football. To do that — and to help athletes at all levels score countless goals — the boot has regularly broken, rebuilt and broken the mold.

The second What the Mercurial (following the initial 2016 release) is no exception. With the 2018 Mercurial Superfly 360, complete with advanced Flyknit as its base, the boot begins life at the pinnacle of football innovation. Though simple in its monochromatic aesthetic, the What the Mercurial also advances the Mercurial silo’s lineage of progressive graphic application.

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Here’s how:

1. The Mercurial 360’s Flyknit yarns have the capacity to be molded into a variety of textures and shapes.

2. This allowed designers to create a 2D graphic incorporating icons of the Mercurial lineage and translate it into a 3D element of the boot’s design.

3. The 3D design is created through a mold that heats and presses the design into the Mercurial 360 knit.

This process allows for distinctive nods to past boots and celebration of iconic Mercurial elements without compromising touch.

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