Creative: Pro:Direct / Photography: Pro:Direct / Words: Pro:Direct

Footballers are incredibly specific when it comes to their boots – whether that’s superstitions, comfort or familiarity when in form – so when Nike players switch into the new Phantom GX mid-way through a World Cup you know that this new-generation boot is something special.

An evolution of the Phantom GT II, the Phantom GX will arrive as a boot that is fine-tuned for perfect precision on pitch. Created for the laser-guided through balls of the number 10 while adding an injection of power and accuracy for the number 9s on the end of those passes. The Phantom GX doesn’t just take the handbrake off any parking-the-bus tactics, it dismantles the bus and sells it for scrap.

Dropping into the world’s largest Bootroom on December 15, the Phantom GX comes with a number of significant tech updates which we’ll run you through here. 5 things you need to know about the Nike Phantom GX football boots. Let’s go…

1. Gripknit Upper

Only one place to start: the new innovation. This is the big one. Nike Gripknit technology – which is the material on the upper of the Phantom GX – took two years to develop and will revolutionise football footwear for the brand. Big statement that, isn’t it? We’ll elaborate. The material is a mix of high-tenacity yarns with a treatment to create Gripknit. The result is perfect interaction with the ball, that is just sticky enough and not too sticky. Think fingerprints.

The Gripknit upper has the perfect amount of grip that allows the ball to have a greater traction tied to the boot, without the risk of the ball becoming stuck under your feet. First touch, caressed pass, spin and accuracy when striking. Locked and loaded.

Another feature worth mentioning is the return of Ghost Lacing on the DF version. This lace cover, that was last seen on the Phantom VSN, provides a larger and cleaner striking zone and is the closest Nike have leant to making a laceless boot.

2. Built For Precision

Precision isn’t defined by one skill or one pass. It’s about putting the ball exactly where you want it, exactly when you need to. Phantom GX’s Gripknit innovation powers the natural ability of a player to be the most precise on the pitch.

Precision has changed. It’s more than just hitting the target or pinging the perfect ball. We’re not talking about standing on the edge of the box unopposed and picking out the top corner in training. We’re talking about precision at full tilt and under pressure, pulling off the perfect pass or shot with a defender breathing down your neck.

Phantom GX is unlocking a stubborn defence, the assist before the assist, the player who threads the needle, the master of geometry who decides tight games, the reason you’re screaming at Southgate to bring on Phil Foden when England are drawing 0-0 with USA with 20 minutes left. Yeah, you get it now. The spark. The player who finds Harry Kane – the 10 loads the bullet, the 9 pulls the trigger.

3. Improved Agility

For all that new Gripknit upper tech to be activated the player needs to have optimum balance. Phantom GX is built for working in tight spaces, to find a way out with the ball, to shift it into space and hit the target. The new soleplate features a mixture of star & conical studs. The stars are designed for improved traction to accelerate fast on the first 3 steps, while the conical studs are made for spin moves and turning on the spot.

4. For The Creators

So who will wear it? The DNA of the Phantom GX is best defined by the players who will wear it. Remember when we spoke about this being a boot for the 9s and 10s who carve out the chances and hit that impossible shot into the bottom corner when the keeper has narrowed the angle – the one chance, one goal players? Well, this list will make sense then: Harry Kane, Phil Foden, Mason Mount, Jack Grealish, Kevin De Bruyne, Alexia Putellas. 

Players that see the game in 360° slo-mo vision. The Phantom GX is the laser on the target. Precision re-defined.

5. When’s it out?

As with the previous Phantom GT II generation, the Phantom GT will be available in a DF collared version and a lower cut option: both of which are elite level. This disruptive launch colourway will drop in the world’s largest Bootroom at Pro:Direct Soccer on December 15. But keep an eye out for it on pitches at the World Cup from the Quarter Final stage.

Shop the full Nike Phantom GX collection in the world's largest Bootroom.