An All New Phantom
Nike is back with a highly anticipated update to the Phantom line. The Phantom GT has been out for several years now, and the design of the boot has remained unchanged for a while. Just in time for the 2022 World Cup, Nike swooped in and delivered a football boot that’s different to anything we’ve seen before. In this review, we’ll cover all of the features of the new Nike Phantom GX to see if it’s a good choice for you.
The Nike Phantom GX is set for a wide release in the coming months, and you’ll soon be able to pick up a pair at World Soccer Shop. If you plan on getting a new pair of boots, use code FINISH10 at checkout to get 10 percent off your order. Now, let’s get into our review of the new Phantom GX!
Sleek Two-Piece Upper
One of the first things you’ll notice about the Phantom GX is that the upper is split into two distinct sections. There is a classic Nike Flyknit inner layer that extends through the tongue, followed by a new outer layer called Gripknit.
This makes for a design that’s unlike anything that we’ve seen so far from the Phantom series. The two layers overlap slightly, as the Gripknit provides a partial covering to the lacing system. Aesthetically, the Phantom GX seems to be more similar to the original Hypervenom compared to the more recent Phantom GT. I personally think this design is sleek and refreshing. Nike has also done a great job on the launch colorway, featuring a blend of hyper pink and black.
From a technological standpoint, the Gripknit material is Nike’s main advancement in the Phantom GX. This new material is pliable, soft, and it wraps the foot tightly. It has a look and feel that’s similar to the upper on the Hypervenom 1, but with even more traction.
The Gripknit upper has a sticky, web-like coating to it. This new upper takes a little getting used to on the field, but it still provides noticeable benefits. When playing in both dry and wet conditions, the Gripknit upper gives you ample traction on the ball. You can feel the difference when you need to make a close first touch or dribble in tight spaces.
In addition to the added grip, this new upper is also really comfortable on feet. It stretches more than its predecessor, giving you a lot of freedom while running.
Fit and Feel
The fit and feel of the Phantom GX is the best that Nike have ever delivered in the Phantom series. You really get a sock-like sensation from the Flyknit inner lining of the boots. Despite being flexible, the upper still wraps your foot tightly to provide solid lockdown.
Nike have also removed part of the heel counter that was found in their previous model. This helps alleviate pressure points at the back of the boot and provide a more comfortable experience.
Due to the stretch provided by the upper, The Phantom GX is a solid option for players with wide feet. So if the Mercurial Vapor 15 is a bit too narrow for you, then this boot may be the perfect solution. Just to note, the Phantom GX runs slightly long. However I still recommend ordering true to size to get the best fit.
Tri-Star Sole Plate
The Phantom GX boasts a brand new sole plate with a completely fresh design. Nike boasts that this sole plate has the highest number and biggest variety of studs on any boot they’ve ever made. It’s true that this boot has a unique combination of conical, chevron, and tri-star shaped studs. Nike also suggests that the placement of the studs was inspired by how players move on the field.
Despite having all of these different studs, it’s hard to notice any major difference with this new sole plate. It provides more than enough traction on the field, but I do wish that it was slightly more rigid. It doesn’t have quite the same snap compared to the carbitex sole plate on the Adidas X Speedportal.
High Cut Phantom DF
Similar to previous models, you can also get the Nike Phantom in a high cut dynamic fit (DF) variation. The Phantom DF is similar in almost every way to the Phantom GX. The key difference being that the DF has an extended flyknit collar that wraps around the ankle. This collar is similar to what you’ll find on the Mercurial Superfly 9.
The Phantom DF also has a more narrow heel compared to the Phantom GX. This provides a slightly more secure feeling on feet, and it also increases the overall lockdown of the boot. Another sleek addition to the Phantom DF is the Ghost lace cover (shown below).
Ghost Lace Cover
From a distance, the Ghost lace cover may give the impression that the Phantom DF is a laceless football boot. However, this cover is simply there to provide a smooth surface across the top of the upper.
This lace cover has some pros and cons. It feels great to have a clean striking surface all the way through the midfoot, but the cover does create some accessibility issues. For example, it can be slightly annoying to tie and adjust your laces once you’ve put on your boots, since you have to constantly get under the cover. However, you get used to this pretty quickly.
The Nike Phantom GX is the best upgrade to the Phantom series in years. Nike have done a great job executing their vision with the new Gripknit upper. They’ve also created a really comfortable football boot, which is the most important feature for a lot of players. This boot is good enough to compete with the Mercurial Vapor 15, and it should definitely be on your radar if you’re on the market for a high end boot.
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