Soccer players use their feet more than any other part of their body to control the ball. So, it stands to reason that the boots they use are arguably the most important piece of equipment in their trade. The thing is: there are a TON of boots to choose from. Adidas, Puma and Nike are the most prevalent, but there are countless models among the manufacturers.
Which types of boots are the most popular? The Football Boots Database has collected data for over 3000 players to help shed light on the answer. Here are the top 10 boots according to the database, down to the exact model. It's worth noting: Even the top 10 boots only represent a collective 61.2 percent of the cleats players wear. So much variety!
Puma evoPOWER 1.3
The Puma evoPOWER 1.3 boots are worn by 1.6 percent of players, just cracking the top 10. Made from synthetic material, they're designed primarily for midfielders.
Popular players: Olivier Giroud (pictured), Gianluigi Buffon, Mario Balotelli, Yaya Toure.
Puma evoSPEED SL II
Another synthetic offering from Puma, 2.1 percent of players wear the evoSPEED SL II boots. They're built for speed (duh!), making them a smart choice for attackers.
Popular players: Antoine Griezmann (pictured), Marco Reus, Romelu Lukaku, Sergio Aguero.
Nike Hypervenom Phantom II
Nike's Hypervenom Phantom II boots are a made with the company's Flyknit technology. The cleats, worn by 3.1 percent of players, feature a high collar that extends from the mouth of the shoe.
Popular players: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (pictured), Robert Lewandowski, Riyad Mahrez, Daniel Sturridge.
Nike Magista Opus II
The Nike Magista Opus II boots are the only boots on the list to feature Nike's "Kanga Lite" material, a synthetic supposed to have the feel of kangaroo leather. (Manufacturers moved away actual kangaroo leather for obvious reasons.) Built with midfielders in mind, 3.9 percent of players wear these boots.
Popular players: Andres Iniesta (pictured), Michael Carrick, Sami Khedira, Thibaut Courtois.
Nike Magista Obra II
Another Nike offering in the top 10, the Magista Obra II boots also feature a collar to help players maximize control. These boots incorporate the Flyknit technology as well, and 4.5 percent of players wear them.
Popular players: Kevin de Bruyne (pictured), Arturo Vidal, David Luiz, Blaise Matuidi.
Nike Mercurial Vapor XI
The lightweight Mercurial Vapor XI boots are worn by 6.5 percent of players. The synthetic design features embossed ridges for enhanced control without sacrificing speed.
Popular players: Eden Hazard (pictured), Neymar, Philippe Coutinho, Douglas Costa
Nike Mercurial Superfly V
One of Nike's latest offering in the wildly popular Mercurial Superfly line, these boots are worn by 8.8 percent of players. The Flyknit technology is supposed to give a "second-skin" feel.
Popular players: Alexis Sanchez (pictured), Anthony Martial, Paulo Dybala, Henrikh Mkhitaryan
Nike Tiempo Legend VI
Just shy of 10 percent of players don the Tiempo Legend VI boots. Eschewing the more en vogue synthetic materials for kangaroo leather, these boots are the choice of a host of the world's best defenders.
Designed primarily for midfielders, players from all sorts of positions opt for the new kangaroo leather Adidas ACE 17.1 boots. The studs were unveiled just in November, but 10.3 percent of players are already on board with them.
Popular players: Jordi Alba (pictured), Manuel Neuer, Mousa Dembele, Philipp Lahm
Adidas X 16.1
The most popular boots! The Adidas X 16.1 cleats are worn by 10.5 percent of players, all of whom are supposedly "uncontrollable." As a result, the boots are said to be for those who cause chaos.
Popular players: Gareth Bale (pictured), Luis Suarez, Shinji Kagawa, Hatem Ben Arfa.