Take a seat and strap yourself in because things are about to get fast. This here is the latest chapter in Nike’s pursuit of pace as the Zoom Mercurial Superfly IX bursts onto the scene with a whole host of technology upgrades for the 22/23 season.


Available at Pro:Direct Soccer on July 1st, the Nike Zoom Mercurial Superfly IX soccer cleats have taken on one of the most dramatic upgrades in the history of this esteemed speed series that dates back 25 years. So where do we start? Easy. With that Air Zoom unit, that’s the big one.

So… what is Nike Air?


Air is the most recognisable of all of Nike’s technologies. Debuted in 1979, Nike have been continuously evolving and improving Air ever since. Air technology consists of pressurised Air in a tough yet flexible bag to provide lightweight cushioning and spring without compromising structure. With each step, pressure is applied to the Air units, which absorb and release energy as you step off.


Got that? Good. Here are 5 things you need to know about the new Nike Zoom Mercurial


Updated Soleplate with Zoom Air


For the first time in Nike’s history, the Swoosh has developed an all-new, soccer-specific Zoom Air unit. Adding Zoom Air to one of the fastest cleats on pitch is like adding fuel to fire. The three-quarter length unit sits in the plate and provides players with an extra injection of speed when they accelerate, jump or look for that added push on tired legs – something that was consistently fed back by players in the test phase is that the energy return is noticeable.


Yeah, we associate Air Zoom technology with basketball and running but Nike have specifically designed this for soccer, making it low to the ground to provide a snappy and responsive feel. The result is 2.5 years of development across 3 prototypes and 5 iterations.


Improved Fit


Rigorous testing of the Speed Cage revealed Nike’s most efficient design to give support at high pace. The upper hugs the foot with Vaporposite+ material for a customisable and locked in fit. And because speed is nothing without control, minimal loft and textured surfaces keep your touch precise when going all out.


New Traction System


The traction plate and Zoom Air unit are directly bonded to keep your foot close to the ground and stable. A new tri-star stud pattern increases leverage for cutting while toe-off centre studs provide traction during warp speed accelerations. Flexible micro grooves deliver explosive acceleration and a micro texture provides grip to enhance control.


Fresh Aesthetic 


Not only is the Zoom Mercurial exceptionally aerodynamic it’s also unapologetically bold with a design that screams speed. So when you feel like you’re floating across the tips of grass as you dart from zone to zone, fully in control, fully locked in, ready to attack from any position, you’re doing it in a cleat that looks and feels like it’s built for pace.


“Air” branding has replaced the iconic swoosh on the side of the cleat (for this launch colourway, anyway) and the plate features a clear window for Nike to proudly showcase their "air" section.


It’s Lighter


The Superfly and Vapor are lighter than the previous generation as Nike strip back the cleats without compromising on comfort and durability. All of the tech upgrades come together to deliver exceptional feel without feeling like you’re in a sports car with no interior.


The Nike Zoom Mercurial Superfly IX, which will also launch in a Vapor XV edition, is built to serve all the needs of the fastest players – focusing on technology that benefits repeated, high intensity sprints, breaking on a dime and changing direction at pace, as well as control at high speed. So, get ready, ‘cos next season is coming at you fast.

Shop the full Nike Zoom Mercurial collection here.