Under Armour's first global soccer marketing campaign, launched today, shows players from around the world bringing down giants, or at least trying to beat back obstacles that stand in the way of personal goals.

The "Slay Your Next Giant" campaign is designed to elevate Under Armour's presence in soccer and also represents the future of the brand's marketing for the sport, the athletic apparel maker says.

Advertisement

The campaign stars Under Armour athletes Memphis Depay, of Manchester United, and Cameron Carter-Vickers, of the Tottenham Hotspur Academy, and their boot laces, which Under Armour has engraved with the players' personal goals. The ads also feature young players from around the globe from Brazil, Chile, Mexico and the UK.

"Whether you're Memphis, an aspiring academy hopeful in Brazil, or a Chilean kid playing with your neighborhood team, the goals you set for yourself loom just as large in your head," Peter Murray, Under Armour's vice president of global brand and sports marketing, said in the company's announcement. "We're making a statement, we're standing by it, and we're pushing forward in a big way with our global football category."

The campaign, in classic Under Armour style, is the latest in a series of motivational ads for the brand starring high-profile athletes. It comes on the heels of the "Rule Yourself" ads, including the buzz-generating "Anthem," in which images of superstar athletes Stephen Curry, Misty Copeland and Jordan Spieth multiply to form an army of synchronized athletes repeating practice drills.

New York ad agency Droga5, which created Rule Yourself as well as previous campaigns featuring Copeland and Gisele Bundchen, is also behind the latest effort.

In an ad launched today, Manchester United's Memphis Depay, dressed in a red Under Armour shirt and Under Armour cleats, walks into a locker room after a game, the roar of the crowd behind him. Images of young soccer players flit by on the screen.

"This one. It was a battle," the voiceover says as Depay removes laces engraved with this goal: Score in front of 75,000 fans. He removes the lace and hangs it up.

"He faced a giant, sized it up and then kicked it in the teeth," the voiceover continues. "It feels good. But don't pat yourself on the back. You're just getting started."

Additional storylines will feature Jermaine Jones of the MLS New England Revolution, Oswaldo Alanis and Jesus Corona of the Mexican National Team and Gonzalo Fierro of Colo-Colo in Chile. Each spot will end with "You're Just Getting Started."

"Slay your next giant is an idea that celebrates success, not by dwelling on the plaudits, but by looking straight ahead to the next challenge that awaits," Steve Howell, a Droga5 creative director, said in a statement.

The players' laces play a role of their own. Under Armour has outfitted its soccer athlete endorsers with laces engraved with a personal goal, "each pair representing a new giant to slay," the company said.

As players reach each milestone, they will remove laces and replace them with a new pair, while documenting it all on social media.

"We knew Under Armour was relatively new to football and that they couldn't become every pair of boots overnight. But they could be in them," Howell said. "After all, every footballer, wherever they are from, does the same thing before every game - they lace up their boots."

Depay, who will be wearing UA Speedform boots for the season, said the campaign feels personal, timed to the start of his first Premier League season.

"I have a lot of giants to slay in the coming months, but I'm feeling more than ready to take on every obstacle and challenge that's presented to me," he said in a statement.

Advertisement

Much of the content will be shown on microsite SlayYourNextGiant.com, where visitors can create their own lace images for Facebook and Twitter.

lorraine.mirabella@baltsun.com

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement