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As the cliche says, “clothes make the man.” While there’s room to debate the validity of that statement, athletic shoes do say something about the wearer. As NBA fans can confirm, getting a signature sneaker is quite the honor. The same is true in the world of soccer. Consider the Kylian Mbappe cleats as an example of that.

If you’ve ever watched Mbappe play for France or PSG, then you know there’s no doubt the forward is an elite talent. When you consider his signature boots in conjunction with his resume, though, it’s easy to see how he’s next in line to rule the footballing world.

What cleats does Kylian Mbappe wear?

French forward Kylian Mbappe controls the ball the the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Kylian Mbappe shows off his signature cleats at the 2022 FIFA World Cup. | Visionhaus/Getty Images)

While we might like to pretend that sports are a pure meritocracy where everything is motivated by the love of the game, everything is a business. Through that lens, it’s not surprising to see the biggest stars wearing the biggest brands. Mbappe is no exception to that. PSG takes the pitch with Nike — or occasionally Jordan — kits, and their marquee player wears Nike boots.

As of the beginning of the 2022-23 campaign, the French forward is wearing a signature edition of the Nike Zoom Mercurial Superfly 9. While there’s room for the color scheme to change, the boots were released in what’s been called a “Dark Beetroot/University Blue/Metallic Vivid Gold” colorway. As spelled out by SoccerBible, the design is “inspired by the Jordan 7 and Parisian afropop.”

In terms of personal details, Mbappe himself is also represented in a few places. There’s a small “KM” logo, and the signature Nike swoosh has two peaks, making it resemble an “M.”

We’ve seen some top-notch signature Mbappe cleats before, including his unforgettable pink boots

As you might expect from his star status, this isn’t Kylian Mbappe’s first signature shoe. If anything, some of the previous editions have been even more impressive due to the personal details incorporated into the design.

Take, for example, the Mbappe x Bondy Mercurial Superfly 7 Elite SE. Bondy refers to the suburb of Paris where the PSG star grew up, and that reference, combined with the French flags, stars representing international triumphs, and gold detailing, suggest the life story of a boy who rose from humble beginnings to shine on soccer’s biggest stages.

Then, there are the pink Mercurials that everyone remembers.

As Mbappe explained in a tweet, the boots carried another sentimental touch as French international Franck Ribery wore his own signature pink Mercurials during the 2000s. The current PSG star wore those as a boy, and ahead of the 2020 Champions League Final, the world was introduced to a new pair of Mbappe cleats honoring the predecessors.

Just forget that Les Parisiens lost that match and focus on the shoe.

Between the narrative, the talent, and Nike’s might, it’s easy to see Kylian Mbappe ruling the soccer world


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In the world of sports, predicting the future can be next to impossible. All it takes, after all, is a single stroke of misfortune to end a player’s career. But even with that uncertainty, it’s safe to chart Mbappe’s course into the stratosphere.

At this point in time, the PSG forward is only 23 years old. He’s already piled up a trophy case full of individual honors, dominated France, and won a World Cup. Barring a Champions League victory, Mbappe is already in gilding-the-lily territory. And, if aging curves are to be believed, he’ll only keep getting better.

Athletic accomplishments, however, are only one part of the overall greatness narrative. There’s also a personal component.

How do fans connect to this player? Do they want to root for his success?

In Mbappe’s case, that’s a yes.

While PSG isn’t globally beloved in the same way a Manchester United may be, they aren’t universally reviled. Even if you take issues with their funding, it’s tough to fault the players for that. The striker also has risen from humble origins — “emerging from the banlieues [literally suburbs, but, in practice, a non-white, working-class neighborhood] and finding success is considered no easy feat,” explained CNBC — and become a global star. He’s essentially on equal footing with Cristiano Ronaldo, who adorned the walls of Mbappe’s childhood room.

Lastly, there has to be support from the powers that be. Talent and a good story can only take you so far before a massive brand steps in to make you a star. Mbappe, as evidenced by his multiple signature shoes, is already a key part of Nike’s universe.

Add in a little good fortune, as the French star is reaching the height of his career as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are endings theirs, and it’s the perfect storm to take over the (soccer) world.

That should mean plenty more signature edition Mbappe cleats to come.