I’m old enough to remember playing goalkeeper when there weren’t gloves. My friends in the local park would smash a ball at me as hard as they could, and I often performed a diving mid-air save to block the shot. The repercussion was that my hand would be stinging like hell for at least a few minutes afterwards.

Then in the late ’70s, goalkeepers (and the average child on the street, like me) began wearing gloves to help eliminate the sting, but more importantly to allow a better grip on the ball especially when it was difficult to handle such as when the ball was wet or muddy.

The evolution of goalkeeper gloves (and goalkeeping gear) have come a long way since then, so I was interested when Storelli Sports approached me to review some of their merchandise. They sent me a pair of goalkeeper gloves in addition to goalkeeper shorts.

The results were pretty revealing. And if you’re a goalkeeper or know someone who plays the position, definitely read on.

BodyShield Ultimate Protection GK Shorts

The first item I received was a black pair of BodyShield Ultimate Protection goalkeeper shorts. And it was something completely different than I’ve ever seen before. The custom gradient-molded EVA foam provides protection from impact against all type of surfaces. I only wish these were around when I was playing in my local park, and later in my life when I was playing indoor soccer. While the shorts do feature great padding, they are still very flexible and feature a proprietary V-Flex design that maximizes the range of motion.

The shorts are also comfortable and feature a moisture-wicking compression fabric, so they don’t get weighed down even in wet conditions.

When reviewing this item, I sought the input of my nephew (pictured) who is a goalkeeper for a soccer team in South Florida. He was impressed by how snug the fit was, as well as how good the design looked. He’s looking forward to testing out the shorts in the upcoming season.

The suggested retail price for the shorts is $64.99. Colors available are black.

XRB-1 GK Gloves

In addition to the shorts, Storelli Sports also sent me a pair of their XRB-1 goalkeeper gloves to review. The gloves are comfortable to wear, are well-padded and are well designed. They feature a technology called aXorb that combines controlled energy release urethane with Extragrip latex form. The aXorb technology provides greater levels of shot absorption and grip than competitor gloves, allowing keepers to control even the hardest shots.

The glove features 6mm of a dual layer aXorb foam, so the glove feels a little bulky when you first slip it on, but the glove is anatomically designed to fit tightly, providing a second skin feeling.

I tried the gloves on and used them in a practice session. They add some peace of mind knowing that not only do they protect, but they also help absorb shots. If I was a goalkeeper, they would definitely give me a confidence boost if I was between the goal posts.

While the XRB-1 GK Gloves are definitely not child’s play, I had my son model the gloves so you can see different shots of the gloves in action.

The suggested retail price for the gloves is $139.99 and $159,99. Colors include grey/red and neon green/black.

Without a doubt, the collection of goalkeeping merchandise from Storelli Sports focuses on quality. If you’re serious about goalkeeping, Storelli Sports is definitely one brand you will want to check out. The gear is not cheap, but you get what you pay for. And if you’re searching for high quality gear, Storelli Sports may be the solution you’re looking for.

Special note to EPL Talk readers: Storelli Sports are offering a 20% discount on their product line as part of their launch this month. Browse their complete range of products in more detail on www.storelli.com and take advantage of this special one-time offer.