World Cup outfitters keep score too
In a final push, Adidas tried to keep up with Nike. Earlier this year, the German sports giant was providing equipment to eight teams participating in the FIFA World Cup 2014, (view article) which put it on par with Puma. At the end of March, Adidas signed a deal with the football federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, at the expense of the Italian Legea, advancing the three stripes brand to second place behind Nike and its ten teams.
On Thursday, the opening day of the World Cup, the three sports brands had outfitted 27 of the 32 teams starting the World Cup.
But in the details, Nike seems to be the best armed of the three competitors. The Swoosh scored twice with uniforms for the inaugural match Brazil-Croatia Thursday night in Rio, although the ball itself and the referee-wear came from Adidas.
But the American brand especially racked up points with the players, as sportbuzzbusiness.fr points out. Nearly 88% of the 736 players are wearing shoes by Nike and Adidas. But more than 53% will be playing their game with Swoosh cleats versus 34% wearing three stripes boots. Less than 7% of footballers will be treading on Puma soles. 17 players are wearing boots by Mizuno; Warrior (a New Balance brand) and Lotto have each shod five players; and Umbro has boots on three others.
On the French team, eleven players are wearing Nike cleats, eight have Adidas and three picked Puma. Mickaël Landreau, France's number three goalkeeper, is wearing cleats from Kipsta, a brand owned by the Oxylane group.
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