You may have seen that, over the last few weeks, we have hosted a number of regional events to mark the inaugural TopTekkers Championships in the US.
The camps, hosted with partner clubs in Michigan, Alabama, Wisconsin, Utah, and California, have seen hundreds of young players put their skills to the test with the hopes of qualifying for the TopTekkers Championships National Finals later this year.
The in-person Championship events are supported by world-leading player development app TopTekkers, which helps and incentivizes players to practice at home.
Qualification for the latter stages of the TopTekkers Championships is achieved through a combination of on-field performance and in-app scores, so players are encouraged to put in the hard work away from the field, too.
One player who rose to the challenge was Bret, who impressed our coaches at the Wisconsin event earlier this month - and was named Player of the Camp, meaning he has qualified for the National Finals.
In a post on social media, Bret's father said: "A bit of a proud dad moment for sure! Bret works extremely hard at getting better, and has completely bought into his coach's philosophy - focusing on the details and turning weaknesses into strengths. He isn't the biggest kid or the fastest kid on the field, but he's super technical and gives 100%."
Lee Fletcher, a Premier League Academy Coach who was part of the camp's hosting team, said: " Bret was very good at the camp and worked really hard, and you can tell he has been using the TopTekkers app. It was a pleasure to work with him."
Coaches put Bret's success - and the success of the other 20 players invited along to the National Final - down to the amount of practice they had put in beforehand using the TopTekkers app.
Lee added: "We were really impressed with the way Bret performed at the TopTekkers Championship camp in Fox Cities. You can really tell that he had been putting in a lot of practice before the event, and we were more than happy to award him with the certificate.
"Bret is the prime example of a player who demonstrates that hard work pays off. By his father's own admission he isn't the biggest or fastest kid, but he more than compensates for that by putting in the practice away from the field. Bret shows that with TopTekkers, as well as the right mindset and dedication, players can be the best they can be.
"As a coach, it's what we want to see when we go out onto the field. If the players have practiced their technical skills to the point where they're competent and confident with the ball, they're going to be able to do what is asked of them and ultimately get more out of soccer."
TopTekkers is a training app for young players, which shows them how to learn soccer skills, motivates them to practice and keeps a track of their progress. TopTekkers guides players through the fundamentals of soccer in the right way - and rewards them for their improvement.
The challenges in the app were developed by English Premier League, UEFA A, and USSF A Licence coaches. The app is even used by professional academies in the EPL and MLS!
For more information about the TopTekkers Championships and how your club can get involved, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
To download TopTekkers, which you can try for FREE, click here (mobile link).