The Difference Between Soccer And Football Cleats: Choose the Right Footwear

With sports like soccer comes sports equipment and accessories. One essential sports accessory, especially in soccer, is the shoes. You cannot play basketball in flip-flops or volleyball in sliders. In this article, we’ll talk about the proper shoes for soccer and similar sports and what the difference is between them. But is there really a difference on these soccer shoes? Let’s find out.

Shoes are essential sports accessory.

We’ll also talk about baseball, football, and Lacrosse cleats because chances are you opened this up, looked online, and saw a lot of options among baseball, football, and lacrosse cleats, along with soccer cleats. Understanding the nuances and differences among baseball, football, and lacrosse cleats is something that will help with your purchasing decision and something you should definitely consider when choosing the best cleats not only for youth sports but also if your child chooses to go onto a travel team as well.

Do Soccer Cleats Work For Football?

Yes, you can use soccer cleats for football because they are the most versatile, but soccer cleats have different attributes that better withstand soccer than football.  Wearing soccer cleats for football will provide less support around the ankles.  Just remember that you may be more susceptible to an injury if you wear the wrong ones for a sport or specific terrain.  To get the ultimate performance, it would be best to wear football cleats.

Playing football? Wearing inappropriate cleat type will provide less ankle support = more susceptible to injuries

What Is The Difference Between Soccer Cleats And Football Cleats?

Is there a difference between soccer cleats and football cleats? There are many differences.  Soccer cleats are low-cut and much lighter.  There is only one type of soccer cleat, while football has 3 types.  These types support different positions in football.  Football cleats are heavier because they provide more support near the big toes of the foot and the ankle. A football cleat will also have bigger spikes because with a football cleat, you need to be able to dig into the ground, and they are heavier. A soccer cleat usually has smaller cleats near the bottom of the shoe.

They both do have similar reasons.  They are used to keep you in the ground. A soccer shoe will help keep you nice and grounded, and there are many brands that help keep you balanced. If you’re playing soccer, you should go for soccer cleat brands that work. 

The main difference between soccer and football cleats is that soccer cleats tend to have more cut cleats.  So if you use them for football or soccer, it is much lower, and it may affect how you feel on the ground.  Soccer shoes also don’t have the toe spike. A toe spike is used in football cleats, and they’re used to help keep you on the ground. Football and soccer cleats are great, and for youth soccer people, you will need soccer tackle shoes. But soccer or football cleats do work for football, so if you want to get a soccer shoe, you should get one of those. 

When you begin to play soccer, especially youth soccer, you may wonder if you need to wear soccer cleats.  They can help, but they’re not necessarily needed.

Soccer midsole shoes usually are much lower cut because you’re wearing socks, and the spike design is a little bit different, so remember that when choosing your cleats. Soccer cleats are low-cut because the players need to be able to maneuver their feet in different directions and be able to change direction on a dime.

Can You Wear Baseball Cleats For Football?

Baseball cleats differ from football cleats.  They have metal studs, unlike football cleats.  So you cannot wear baseball cleats for football.  Metal cleats would be dangerous to wear in football.  And you cannot wear football cleats to play baseball.

Wear appropriate footwear for optimal performance

What Cleats Should I Get For Optimal Play?

The style you choose for football cleats depends on the position you play.  A lineman may want more ankle support because they move side to side more often than forward, so they will get cleats that are high tops.  This provides support on the ankles so a player doesn’t roll their ankle from all the lateral movement.

Mid-cut shoes allow a little bit more movement around the ankle but still give some support, so the players that usually use this are quarterbacks, running backs, and receivers.  This allows more movement, unlike the high tops.

Then there are the low-cut styles of shoes.  These are a lot like the soccer cleats.  This provides better acceleration and speed for a player.  Most players that wear these are defensive players.  This allows them to switch positions and directions quickly, which is definitely needed when on the defense.


Do The Choice Of Cleats Matter?

Yes!  Most definitely, yes!  Running on the grass in tennis shoes or sneakers is a hard feat: any athlete knows this.  A player will slip and slide when trying to change direction, and it will be hard to make any big plays.  This slipping is even worse matter if the grass is wet, and many sports will play in the rain as long as there is no lightning.  Cleats dig into the ground, allowing traction and providing a player to propel off the ground much better than if they were in sneakers.  It provides better acceleration and top speed. 

A wide receiver does benefit from wearing football or soccer cleats because they’ll be able to hold the football and catch it, staying on the ground and not falling.  Defensive backs also benefit from these because the toe spike will offer more balance and firmness when on the ground. When you dig the toe cleat in on the bottom of the shoe, it will keep you nice and grounded as a result. 

If you aren’t ready to invest in a toe cleat, you may think that you can wear running shoes.  But, it does make a difference, especially at the bottom of the shoe, if you wear a toe cleat, especially as a football player. That’s because a football player does need that extra bit of traction, and a toe cleat offers that. Basketball shoes also don’t provide the traction stability and versatility that normal cleats do. 

What About A Baseball Cleat? Is It Really More Versatile Than The Other Types?

You may wonder how cleats for baseball can be used with baseball, football, and soccer.  Football, baseball, and other sports do use similar cleats, but a baseball cleat is a bit different.

A baseball cleat has spikes near the ankle, and they’re all around the same size.  It tends to be light, and there is usually support near the toe to help run faster.

When it comes to soccer shoes, using soccer shoes as a baseball-football cleat is valid. That’s because a baseball-football cleat isn’t as versatile as soccer shoes. Most baseball-football cleats typically are used with their respective sports. Baseball-football cleats can be used for different sports; you just have to focus on making sure that you do take out the spikes when changing from soccer shoes to baseball-football cleats for extra protection. 

Choosing the right cleat, whether they’re football-baseball cleats or soccer-baseball cleats, is important. That’s’ because soccer-baseball cleats do have similar structures with extra stability, and you can use soccer-baseball cleats interchangeably. 

There are also some that are soccer-baseball cleats, so if you want to play both, a soccer-baseball cleat is good. They’re not as effective as soccer shoes or baseball cleats, but they do the job. 


What About Youth Lacrosse?

Youth Lacrosse cleats differ from soccer, baseball, and football cleats.  That’s because you can use baseball and Lacrosse cleats interchangeably if you want. 

Youth Lacrosse cleats tend to be the highest in terms of the size of the shoe when looking at soccer, baseball, football, and Lacrosse cleats. But Youth Lacrosse cleats are a bit different. They are similar mostly to soccer cleats, and have mid-level ankle support. They also have a toe cleat, so you can use baseball, football, and Lacrosse cleats most of the time interchangeably, but not for soccer.

Youth Lacrosse cleats tend to be much higher and may use metal or plastic spikes too. They do have spikes on the outside, so they will offer you a bunch of support when running differences. They tend to be the most different when looking at soccer, baseball, football, and Lacrosse cleats. But, like soccer, baseball, and football cleats, there are some similarities, and whether you need soccer, baseball, football, or even Lacrosse cleats, you can definitely get them easily.

Can You Use Soccer, Baseball, And Football Cleats For Other Sports? 

Some snow sports may benefit from cleats, but usually, baseball, football, and Lacrosse cleats are used with their respective sports. It’s best to use them in their respective areas.


Are Laceless Cleats Good?

In 2016, laceless soccer cleats were released.  Strings sometimes impact the way a soccer player strikes the ball, and so having laceless ones help minimize this effect.  When laceless soccer cleats came out, many were skeptical about how they would fit and if they would stay snug on their feet.  But eventually, many were impressed.  These cleats were comfortable and provided much-needed support.  So yes, they are good.


Cleats for soccer are the most versatile and can be worn for other sports but not the other way around.  They weigh so lightly to help with contact speed and acceleration, which is needed for the sport. Football has more types of cleats.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Are There No Toe Cleats In Soccer?

Football cleats and soccer have an extra toe stud because they need it to push off the ground in a hunched position.  This helps them lift off from that three-point position.  It has been proven that this wouldn’t help traction for a soccer player.

Why Do My Football Cleats Hurt My Feet?
They may hurt your feet, especially if they are new.  You will need to break them in, so wear them around the house before playing on the field.  If they continue to hurt your feet, it may mean that you have the wrong size. You may need to go a size higher or lower or maybe get wide shoes. If they fit snugly, then there should be no pain that comes with them.

Are Soccer Cleats Dangerous?

Soccer cleats are not dangerous since you may stab someone with them, but they can be dangerous if you buy the wrong one for a specific turf.  They may be harmful if you try to wear them on artificial turf.  There have been many knee injuries that were caused because of wearing the incorrect cleats on the wrong turf.

Is It OK To Wear Soccer Cleats For Football?
Why Are Football Cleats Not Allowed In Soccer?
Why Do Football Players Wear Soccer Cleats?
Are Soccer Cleats Lighter Than Football Cleats?
What Cleats Are Best For Football?
Are There Different Types Of Football Cleats?
What Cleats Do NFL Players Wear?
Should Football Cleats Be Tight Or Loose?
Are Football Cleats Good On Turf?
What Cleats Do NFL Quarterbacks Wear?
What Is The Difference Between Soccer And Ball Cleats?
What Is The Difference Between Football And Soccer?
What Studs Are Not Allowed In Soccer?
Are All Soccer Cleats The Same?
What Does FG Mean In Soccer Cleats?

Other Resources


Last Updated on May 12, 2023 by Bernadine Racoma

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