KCKRS Went To Manchester

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Written By Chris Azzopardi

As our readers know well, KCKRS is an important and influential site, or at least that’s what we keep telling you. Well, if you say something loud enough and often enough, people start to believe it. adidas believed it, and offered us a trip across the pond to see them launch their new boot, the Predator Lethal Zones. Seeing an excellent opportunity to not have to put up with me for a week, Chris and Jason put me on a plane to England.

When I arrived at my hotel in Manchester (following some frustrating travel that resulted in two extra airports and a short stop in Amsterdam), there was a black box waiting in my hotel room.

Inside was a plain white shoe, a marker, and instructions.

The next morning, the ten or so bloggers invited to the event met for breakfast, handed our shoes in, and were whisked off to the venue, Event City (which, for security reasons, we weren’t allowed to disclose). We were given bags of gear, which included these, the new adidas Predator Lethal Zones.

We changed into our kits, then were led out into the main event area to begin our challenges.

There were five, one for each of the boot’s zones I highlighted yesterday.

Passing was probably the most difficult. We were trying to put the ball through a small pentagon downrange. Only one person in our group of four managed to put a ball through the target, and even the pros had trouble later in the day.

Next we had the power test, where we fired shots at a target and had our speeds recorded by radar gun. I managed to put my first effort directly on target, and unlike Edin Dzeko, stayed on my feet.

After that, we had the “sweet spot” challenge, where we did our best to destroy cardboard targets. They were accompanied by an explosion of CO2 and smoke if you took out the middle. Alas, I didn’t get that, but I was one of the people to decapitate one of them and I also managed to amputate his leg below the knee.

Next was the “first touch” zone, where they launched a ball out of an air cannon and had you control the ball and volley it into the net.

And finally, we had the dribbling zone, where we slalomed through jets of water with the ball at our feet. It was exactly as awesome as it sounds.

After our challenges, we changed out of our kits, had lunch, then sat down for a long discussion with adidas product manager Aubrey Dolan, formerly of Irish Premier League teams Sligo Rovers and Galway. As a former footballer, he had ideas on what he wanted the boot to be, and he had a lot of belief in the boot he helped create. He explained the technical aspects of the boot to us, and told us about the production history.

Once the discussion was completed, the rest of the media arrived, and joined us in waiting for the pros to show up. Edin Dzeko from Manchester City came in alongside Manchester United’s Tom Cleverly and Luis Nani, and they proceeded to generally be much more competent at the various challenges (Except for the bit where Dzeko fell on his ass).

Afterwards, we had a Q and A session with Aubrey and Tom Cleverley, the last item on the day’s itinerary.

I’m no expert on launching football boots, but I have to say this was an excellent, enjoyable way to do so. My thoughts on the boots themselves can be found here, and they go on sale worldwide tomorrow.

(Special thanks to Off The Post for the videos I linked to here)

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