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Best Football Cleats for Heel Pain

Best football shoes for heel pain

Heel pain may not sound horrible, but it is one of the most common reasons why football players are sidelined from the game, often for whole seasons and sometimes for life. While you may not be able to rule out the possibility of sports injuries, the right shoes can help you perform the best on the field. However, it can be difficult to find the right pair with so many options. This blog post aims to help you with just that. But, before we discuss the best football cleats for heel pain, let’s first look at what causes the football players to suffer from help pain.


What Causes Heel Pain in Football Players?

There can be multiple reasons why a football player experiences heel pain. But, it all essentially comes down to the stress and strain that the players put on their feet while on the field and the repetitive motions involved in the game.


Let’s highlight the most common issues these repeated motions, stress, and strain can cause to develop a better understanding of what is causing you heel pain:


✔ Planter Fasciitis

This is the most common cause of heel pain among football players, affecting about one million players every year. Characterized by sharp or aching heel pain that is more pronounced in the morning or after periods of inactivity, it is caused by the inflamed or injured plantar fascia due to overuse or overstretching.


Planter fascia is the long, flat thick tissue on the bottom of the foot that connects the heel bone to the toes along with supporting the arch of the foot.


✔ Heel Bursitis

Bursitis, or bursa inflammation, can develop at any of the joints that are involved in repetitive motions. One that football players often suffer from is the bursitis of the heel.


Heel bursitis is characterized by pain at the back of the heel, and is caused by swelling of the bursa (fluid-filled sacs) that protect the Achilles tendon. This swelling of bursa is known to be most often triggered by overuse, sudden excessive stress, or wearing ill-fitted shoes.


✔ Achilles Tendinitis

Achilles tendinitis is a condition caused by the swelling of the tendon that connects your heel to the calf. It causes pain near the bottom of the foot.


Multiple factors can cause the inflammation of Achilles tendon in football players, or athletes in general. These include:

  • Overuse
  • Sudden increase of activity or the intensity of sports or exercise
  • Twisting the foot in or our suddenly
  • Playing on hard surfaces
  • Wearing wrong shoes; ones that do not give enough support


✔ Haglund’s Deformity

Characterized by severe pain, inflammation, and redness at the back of the ankle, Haglund’s deformity is a condition of the foot in which a bump develops on the back of the heel bone. It develops due to continuous (or frequent) pressure on the back of the heel; something that poorly fitted shoes often cause.


✔ Sever’s Disease

Most common in young football players (or athletes), sever’s disease is characterized by swelling and pain in the heel. It may also sometimes cause bruising. The condition is caused by the irritation and inflammation of the cartilage layer at the end of the heel bone, called the growth plate, due to repetitive stress to the heel.


How Football Players Can Prevent Heel Pain?

Heel pain is very common among athletes, especially football players. But, fortunately, there are plenty of ways to prevent it. Research shows that taking appropriate preventive measures can help reduce the rate of sports injuries by 25%.


One of the key measures that football players can take to avoid heel pain (and other foot injuries) is to wear the right football cleats on the field.


It may sound strange, but a surprisingly large number of football players wear wrong shoes. The issues range from them being poor quality to ill-fitted to not providing enough foot support. To help you find the right pair of football cleats that can aid in avoiding heel pain and maximizing performance, we have shortlisted some of the best options available on the market. Let’s take a look to make your time in the ground more comfortable, enjoyable, and productive.


The 6 Best Football Cleats for Heel Pain

Our top choices for football cleats for heel pain include:

1. Adidas Predator 19.3 Firm Ground Soccer Cleats


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Featuring a structured primesh upper and a flexible sock-like structure, these Adidas cleats provide both comfort and support to your feet. They are known for high stretch and the ability to mold according to the shape of the wearer’s feet. This guarantees better fit and superior comfort. The sock-like structure and thick, soft cushioning work as shock-absorber, significantly reducing the likelihood of foot injuries.


These fit true to size and are known to hold their shape and fit over time.



  • Lightweight
  • Stretchable
  • Durable



  • Not water resistant


2. PUMA Men’s Evopower 1.3 FG Soccer Shoe


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Made with the innovative gsf outsole technology, these cleats feature an anatomically engineered outsole that, together with the stretchable adaplite upper, ensure optimal performance in the ground by improving stability, agility, and kicking accuracy. The shoes also give you maximum room to bend your feet while providing adequate support to prevent injury. PUMA Evopower 1.3 also features the supremely comfortable accufoam lining that ensures the highest comfort. The carefully designed outsole works together with the unique stud configuration to reduce the impact of repetitive, stressful movements on the feet.


With all these incredible properties, it’s no wonder that these PUMA shoes enjoy a high reputation among football players. These are particularly valued as one of the best soccer cleats for heel pain.


The only downside of PUMA Evopower 1.3 cleats is that they aren’t the best choice for people with wide feet.



  • Waterproof
  • EVA inner sole provides superior comfort
  • Removable inner sole
  • Durable



  • Not ideal for people with wide feet
  • Aren’t the easiest to clean


3. Adidas Men’s Copa Mundial Soccer Shoe


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These Adidas cleats are made with premium kangaroo leather, rubber outsole, and die-cut EVA midsole to provide utmost comfort without weighing your feet down. The leather upper also provides supreme flexibility while the Firm Ground outsole guarantees a stronger traction. Together, these features allow the player to run at a lightning speed without compromising on grip, stability, or comfort.


They work equally great on all types of playing surfaces, including natural grass, artificial turf, and hard-packed surfaces. With a dual-density outsole, Adidas Copa Mundial also provides great heel and arch support, and are considered one of the best cleats for plantar fasciitis.



  • Provide higher traction and stability without compromising on speed
  • Kangaroo leather upper ensures higher flexibility and comfort for the feet
  • EVA midsole and rubber outsole make these shoes lightweight
  • Works equally great on different types of surfaces
  • Known to work great for preventing and managing plantar fasciitis
  • Features a quick-drying synthetic lining



  • While the brand says these shoes fit true to size, users recommend going down half a size to get better fit.


4. Nike Neymar Mercurial Veloce III FG Cleats


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A pair of cleats made by the footwear manufacturing giant Adidas to celebrate the football hero Neymar have to be of topnotch quality. And Mercurial Veloce III FG Cleats do not disappoint. Featuring a design that’s inspired by the shoes Neymar wore back in 2010, these Nike cleats offer a snug fit and high traction, particularly on firm grounds. The low-profile cushioning provided by its perforated sockliner works great to reduce stud pressure, enhancing comfort and easier movements. The dual-density inner sole also helps reduce the impact on the feet.



  • Padded sole and heel provides extra support
  • The 3D speed rib design helps improve control over the ball
  • Dual-density inner sole reduces the impact on the feet



  • May take some time to adjust on the feet


5. Diadora Men’s Capitano TF Turf Soccer Shoes


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If you’re looking for a pair of football cleats for heel pain, but don’t want to spend big bucks on it, Diadora Men’s Capitano TF is a good option. Featuring a synthetic polyurethane upper, cotton and EVA insole, EVA foam wedge midsole, and anti-abrasion, studded rubber outsole, these check all the boxes for good soccer shoes for heel pain.


The EVA foam midsole and insole are shock-absorbing, and work great for reducing the overall impact on the feet. While the name of these cleats may make one believe that they are only suitable for turf surfaces, that’s not the case in reality. These football cleats work equally well on natural hard surfaces. It also features a thicker rubber outsole on the heel area, which provides greater comfort and heel support.



  • The EVA foam insole and midsole give high shock-absorbing properties
  • High-quality rubber outsole provides superior traction
  • The thick rubber outsole in the heel area provides additional comfort and support



  • Aren’t rated the best in terms of moisture protection
  • Harder to clean


6. Nike Phantom VSN Academy DF IC


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These Nike football cleats gained huge attention when they were first launched due to their concealed laces – a design feature that the company labelled as the Ghost Lace. It gives these shoes a more polished look, but this isn’t what you look for when considering football cleats for heel pain. You want a pair of shoes that provide adequate comfort and enhanced support. Fortunately, these Phantom VSN by Nike provide that as well. The padded interior provides superior comfort whereas the concealed laces offer a snug fit. These football cleats also feature a dynamic fit high-collar that provides additional support and stability.



  • Snug fit
  • Padded inside offers enhanced comfort
  • Features a dynamic fit high-collar, which provides additional support and stability
  • High responsiveness
  • Works equally great on multiple playing surfaces



  • According to user reviews, they may not be ideal for wide feet
  • New users may experience a little difficulty in putting them on due to the concealed laces and high ankle collar


Our Final Thoughts

Wearing the right pair of football cleats is as important to your performance as practicing for the game. The right shoes provide support, stability, traction, and comfort, allowing you to put your best foot forward on the field along with protecting your feet against all that running, twists and turns, stress, and strain they experience during the play.


However, finding one such pair is often easier said than done. We understand the problem, and this is exactly why we decided to offer a helping hand. We reviewed many different types of football shoes from various different brands – evaluated and compared their features, read users’ reviews about them, and studied experts’ opinions – to put together this list of best football shoes.


All the pairs of cleats that we have selected check all the boxes for great football cleats but are specifically known for providing additional comfort and support to the heel that experiences the most stress during the game, and hence, is more likely to develop issues. While there is no dearth of good-quality soccer shoes, these are some of the best football cleats for heel pain. Choose any of these that seem to best match your preferences, style, and budget, and you’ll get superior comfort and heel support.


Image Credits

Photo by Kobby Mendez on Unsplash