The World Cup is a perfect time for everyone to pretend they’re fanatical about football. I’m not going to feign fandom. I was a terrible player which makes me a weak spectator — I can’t fully appreciate the nuances of the game, because I have little comprehension of how to play it. I don’t think I’m alone there — a lot of projects are a bit Roger Nouveau Football Fan. Skate tie-ins can be even more awkward — there’s plenty of crossover, but skateboarding always seemed like a reaction against team sport twattery when I was a kid. But I also hear a lot of diehard fans complaining about the hordes suddenly taking an interest whenever there’s a global tournament, which is a strange argument — it’s not inconceivable that those who don’t make the effort every weekend might legitimately take an interest in a worldwide, heavily marketed tournament that determines a nation’s mood and pits the greatest players in the world against each other. You see a lot of people who own a CP Company coat and once saw a man push a man at a game banging on about tear-ups and crews too — fake hoolies seem to be worse than the biannual swarm of one-month fans. I’m mostly interested in football boots and characters like Edmundo, John Sitton or Ali Dia. As a result, it was kind of odd to get interviewed by designboom on a football-related subject, but here’s a chat with me about football boots — working on that project it was fascinating to see how Nike Football evolved from a boot made to help BRS split from Onitsuka in 1971 (because Onitsuka didn’t make football boots, Nike hastily got a boot with a Swoosh on it into the market to prove that they had a point-of-difference when it came to legal tussles) to Gordon Cowans Tippexing a Swoosh onto his PUMA King boots in 1982 to the Mercurial Vapor twenty years later.

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