The case of Puma goalkeeper gloves is an interesting one to explore. They’ve never been a go-to brand for goalkeepers. Yet, they’ve been around making goalkeeper gear for a long time. Perhaps what I just mentioned is my own perception because of their lack of presence within the goalkeeping market in the western hemisphere. In any case, they’ve recently done two things. The first thing that they did was go ahead and produce a ton of different gloves! Any type of goalkeeper glove that you can find from another brand you can almost bet that there’s a Puma equivalent of some sort. In fact, these Puma Future Grip 1 NC goalkeeper gloves are quite similar to the Adidas Predator Pro version. Even one of the color schemes is eerily similar. I just saw Jan Oblak wearing a pair of these in blue and orange.
Seeing as how Puma is blatantly trying to mimic Adidas I am going to be making a direct comparison between these gloves and the Predator Pro. That’s not going to be the main focus of the article though. There’s a twist with these gloves that I want to talk about as well. As is the case with all of the gloves that I’ve talked about on this site I’m going to try and give you the real world application of what certain features mean. For example, that mesh backhand that these Puma Future Grip 1 NC Goalkeeper Gloves have, worries me. Particularly because even when it’s not raining we always seem to be playing on wet fields these days. Before I get too off course though let’s get going!
Puma Future Grip 1 NC Goalkeeper Gloves – Grip
This is an interesting glove to analyze when it comes to grip. I mentioned recently in one of the other reviews that many of these modern gloves go against what we always assumed as the key to good grip. For a long time it seemed like the softest gloves that you can find on the market were going to be the ones with the best grip. That’s just not the case anymore. These Puma Future Grip 1 NC gloves are a perfect example of gloves that feature a harder palm area, but are still able to provide decent grip. You may not be getting the stickiest gloves on the market. That’s probably fair to say, but at the same time these gloves are going to keep their grip level for longer.
My knock on other gloves is that they are extremely sticky when you just take them out of the case for the first time. The grip levels drop off right after the first game. I think it’s fair to say that with these gloves you’re not going to be wowed by the way that the ball just sticks to the glove. However, you can get better grip with GloveGlu and proper glove care. As I mentioned, what you’re going to have are gloves that feature decent grip for a longer stretch of time. The elephant in the room might be the design of the thumb. It wasn’t as uncomfortable and these designs on the palm usually help in rougher fields.
These Gloves Are Also Betting Big On Mobility
Another thing that these gloves have going for them is the fact that they are designed to ensure that you can have a lot of finger movement. This is something that all of the top brands are currently big on. That’s why we see gloves getting thinner and in this particular case the gloves have what I would call a very thin layer of cotton in the backhand area. That backhand area kind of worries me a bit. However, I do have to acknowledge that the gloves provide a ton of mobility. You’re not going to feel like your hands are trapped with these gloves. To be honest these are not the type of gloves though for someone who is looking for extra finger protection and a hard backhand.
Usually with goalkeeper gloves you tend to have two options to choose from. Either you’re bringing on mobility and that means that you give up finger protection and sometimes even protection from hard shots overall. The other option is to go big on finger protection which leaves you with a hard glove and limited mobility. A common issue with gloves that favor mobility is a lack of protection from hard shots. You’re going to be feeling the burn when you go to save the ball from those players who can really blast it. These Puma gloves are in a bit of a middle ground when it comes to this. They are not going to provide a ton of protection against those hard shots. However, the palm area is thick enough to the point where you’ll get some protection for sure.
They Tend To Be A Durable Option
The way these palms are made they tend to be a bit thicker than some of the regular latex palms that we’re going to find on other gloves. That gives me some concern when it comes to grip to be honest. The palms that you can find on these Puma Future Grip 1 NC goalkeeper gloves are very similar to the ones that the Rinat Turf gloves had for example. There are a ton of pros and cons that we can list when it comes to gloves that feature these types of palms. As previously stated durability is going to be one of the biggest positives of these gloves. When you’re going to be paying north of 100 dollars for a pair of gloves that’s certainly something that you’re going to like.
With all of this in mind I would say that these gloves are one of the best options on the market to use as training gloves. Especially if you’re someone that trains on a daily basis. With the way that the palm is set up even if you’re losing some grip with these gloves they are going to be gloves that you can count on to feel relatively similar all the way through their lifespan. I’ve talked about this a lot on these reviews. Many gloves out there have a very high ceiling when it comes to grip. After just a couple of games though you never reach those awesome grip levels with the glove. This is a more steady option if you want to look at it that way.
Warning When It Comes To Glove Care
One of the issues that you may have when you’re dealing with durable palms that are dark is that you’re not going to see a lot of the wear and tear up close. What usually happens is that you’ll think the gloves don’t need as much effort when it comes to glove care. In this particular case I’m going to strongly disagree. As I mentioned these can be very durable gloves that you’re going to be able to use on tough fields. The problem with a rough turf field is that you’re going to be rubbing the gloves up against those rubber pellets on the ground. When you do that enough the glove is going to become slick naturally losing a lot of its natural grip.
What I would recommend with these particular gloves is being very active when it comes to glove care. You may not see the palm ripping apart or wearing down. That doesn’t mean though that your gloves won’t benefit from a good wash. Plus, these are the type of gloves that may need a little extra help to take the grip to the next level. So washing them constantly and applying Gloveglu can be one of the best ways to get the most out of these gloves. These tips can potentially apply to any gloves that you may want to use. The reason why I want to highlight this idea with these particular gloves is because the wear and tear may not be so evident. So you may think you can get away with glove care that’s not as proactive.
Puma Future Grip 1 NC Goalkeeper Gloves vs Adidas Predator Pro Gloves
I compared these two gloves at the beginning of the article, so I thought it would make sense to do a little head to head. As I mentioned before the design of the glove is eerily similar. I’m going to leave it at that and not go down the rabbit hole of any conspiracy theories. In any case, when it comes to natural grip the Adidas gloves are going to be much better. Is that a major advantage in this day and age though when you can more or less manufacture more grip? I really don’t know which side to fall on in this argument. Anyway, durability has to go to the Puma Future Grip 1 NC gloves because of what I just mentioned in the previous paragraph.
When it comes to comfort I’m going to have to side with the Adidas option again. This is because the way that the palm is crafted in the Puma gloves tends to be a lot harder. When you put on the Adidas gloves your hands feel a lot softer. They can help you deal with hard shots much better. From there the fit in the wrist area I would say is virtually the same. So technically the Adidas version can be named a better quality glove. The Puma gloves are more durable, with comparable amenities if you will. I could contend that using the Puma gloves for training and the Adidas gloves for games is a good set up! You could be saving some money down the road.
Is The Fact That Top Goalkeepers Are Using Them A Good Thing?
It’s not a bad thing! Recently I did an article on the different gloves that pro goalkeepers wear. What I said then, and I can reiterate now is that money is the driving force behind those decisions. Especially for some of these top goalkeepers. Actually it’s a money issue even for lower league keepers. If you have a local brand come up to you as a lower league keeper, and they want to sponsor you giving you free gloves there’s a good chance that you’re going to take them up on their offer! The way that you sometimes go through gloves when training daily is eye opening when you first experience it. For a lot of the guys in the lower leagues that sponsorship is really helpful.
Now, it’s also true that most of the top goalkeepers that wear these gloves feel that they can be more or less themselves with them on. It wouldn’t be smart of them to take up a sponsorship and wear gloves that they are not comfortable with. Long term that’s just not a good plan. You may be tempted especially at a certain age to wear the same gloves as your idols. It’s actually a better idea to wear the type of glove that suits you best!
Who Should Buy These Puma Future Grip 1 NC Goalkeeper Gloves?
This is a question that I like answering at the end of all of these reviews. Certain gloves are going to be a better fit for some goalkeepers than for others. There are a ton of things that can factor into the decision. In this particular case I already hinted at who I feel these Puma Future Grip 1 NC Goalkeeper Gloves can be perfect for. That is goalkeepers who are looking for a decent training glove that’s going to last a good chunk of the season. There are not that many gloves out there that fit that criteria at any point in the price scale.
I understand that buying gloves at north of 100 dollars for training can seem like a lot. You can still use them for games though! Especially if you’re going to be playing on turf consistently. In fact, there’s an argument to be made that this opens up another prototype of goalkeeper that can benefit from these gloves. If you play on rough fields a lot, and you want to wear a quality glove that can hold up well these are an option for you!
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