No matter how talented a player is, it is always difficult to fit into Pep Guardiola’s succinct playing style. However, in the case of Mateo Kovacic, the story is a little different as he found himself starting for Manchester City in the UEFA Super Cup last night benching John Stones, who dominated the midfield spot last season
The world cup semi-finalist was instrumental on the middle of the pitch yesterday as Man City clinched their first-ever UEFA Super Cup title by beating Sevilla 5-4 on penalties.
But in a surprising turn of events, his football is not the only talking point among fans but also his football boots that he wore against Sevilla.
Aesthetically pleasing, oozing a retro vibe, Kovacic wore the King Platinum, Puma Black-Puma White, and fans are eager to find out more about it. Coming straight from the Horse’s mouth (PUMA), this is made for modern ballers.
But what has made fans nostalgic about the Puma boots is not just its classy design but Puma King’s long-standing association with the game and its presence in some of football’s biggest moments.
The inception of the Puma King began when Eusebio first wore the boot back in 1968, scoring a staggering 68 goals with them. However, that wasn’t the watershed moment for Puma King, as it had to wait for two more years to get the spotlight.
Puma had to break the “Pele pact” it had with Adidas over sponsoring Pele, and luckily it gave Puma King its moment of glory when the legendary Brazilian scored 4 goals in the 1970 World Cup in Mexico wearing the Puma King boots and bagged the Man of the Tournament award.
The icing on the cake was a sheer marketing tactic as Pele asked the referee to stop the match before the final whistle so that he could tie laces, consequently, every camera focused on his shoes and the rest is history.
Four years later, at the 1974 World Cup, the Man of the Tournament will feature wearing the same Puma King boots despite his team losing in the final of the World Cup to West Germany. The man in context is none other than one of the greatest minds of football who revolutionized the game, Johan Cruff.
In 1978, the man wearing the boots won the World Cup by scoring a brace in the final. This time it was an Argentine and his name was Mario Kempes.
But none of these compared to the 1986 World Cup held in Mexico when Diego Maradona scored the greatest World Cup Goal of all time against England wearing the Kings boot. Argentina lifted their second World Cup, and it was the third time when the winning team’s best player wore the iconic boots at football’s biggest stage.
The price of the Puma Kings boot that Kovacic wore yesterday is 190 pounds in UK and 200 dollars at US, according to Puma’s official website.
In recent times, Adidas and Nike rule the game, as the biggest players choose them over Puma, but when it comes to iconic boots nothing compares to the iconic Puma King, which wraps itself with football’s most iconic and celebrated moments.