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Parent Player Coach Testimonials
10 things that make EduKick Unique
We were the first and are the most experienced privately established Football and Education Academies Company since 2001.
Our institutional motto “Football is Education” explains it all. We teach character building using football as the vehicle to teach invaluable life lessons.
Our parental communication and reporting is a key feature of our participant’s success. Parents are constantly updated on their son or daughter’s development and progress.
Safety and supervision is our highest priority. We provide a dedicated full-time Welfare Officer who is available to support our participant’s needs, care and attention 24 hour day for the duration of their course.
Exposure to professional clubs- Integrity is very important to us at EduKick so we do not promise trials with professional clubs in exchange for simply registering for one of our programs. Our program venues and staff are strategically selected to provide each participant with the exposure needed for them to hopefully obtain a trial with a club. Professional club scouts & youth coaches are often present at EduKick Academy matches, we have unique alignments and affiliations with professional clubs in each of our venues and in some venues all participants are prepared for and entered into well-respected and ethically minded national soccer scouting open trial events approved by us.
All of our programs follow a highly structured football training syllabus identical to professional club youth academies. The programs are delivered by highly qualified UEFA professional football coaches with many years of experience working with youth players.
We prepare our participants for the demands of Twenty First Century Education in a flexible curriculum that allows daily football training and study to function together. As well as Language immersion study courses we offer British system GCSE & A-Level study, USA Grade 912 High School study and BTEC Diplomas in Sports performance.
Intercultural competence is very important to us and a key element is selecting our venues. It is important for us that our participants take away a lot more than just football development and education. We educate our participants to have empathy and an understanding of the behaviours and thinking of the people of their host country so we encourage them to become part of the local community and to immerse themself in the local culture.
We pride ourselves in providing a full package of services inside our tuition fees. We include accommodation; food, local transport, medical insurance, training kit, academics, football training, matches, welfare, supervision and airport pick up/drop off.
Mentorship is a key to successful development on and off the pitch so careful consideration is given when selecting our staff. All our staff are excellent role models sharing their experiences with our participants. Our staff build relationships with our participants based upon trust and act as great sounding boards and provide a new perspective to our participants when they feel it is necessary.
EduKick Alumni Davide Somma is currently a first team squad member of the English Championship club Leeds United FC. EduKick assisted Davide to obtain trials in Spain & Italy after his program in Madrid ended and he signed his first professional contract with Perugia in Italy. Davide then moved to the United States and signed a developmental contract with San Jose Earthquakes where he became a member of the Generation Addidas squad who toured England which persuaded Somma to decide to try his luck in the UK and after initial trials with Queens Park Rangers he trialed with Leeds United and earned a contract. In 2010 Davide made his full international debut with the South African men’s national team in a fixture with the USA.
Duncan McCormick aged 17 from Seattle spent the 2010/11 season at the EduKick Madrid Academy. Since returning home Duncan has been part of the Seattle Sounders MLS franchise Academy and this past season has become a regular starter for the U18 squad as well as participating in a number of senior men’s squad reserve team games. Duncan has also had the opportunity to rain with the senior men’s squad first team on a number of occasions in the last few months. A highlight for Duncan was last September when he played for the reserve team in front of 15,000 spectators when the Sounders took on their rivals the Portland Timbers!
Duncan has just announced that he is very excited to have accepted an offer to play soccer at Wake Forest University from the fall of 2014.
Miguel Hamutenya from Namibia is an EduKick Alumni who is currently playing professionally with Norwegian 2nd division club Strommen FC. Since leaving the EduKick program Miguel signed a professional contract with Bnei Sakhnin of the Israel Premier League. After a successful season with Bnei Sakhnin Miguel then signed a contract subject to a successful work permit application with Glasgow Rangers of the Scottish premier division but unfortunately the work permit application was turned down so he could not continue with the then Scottish Champions so tried his luck in Norway where he has now established himself as a key member of the championship chasing Strommen FC team
EduKick Alumni Sam Zimmermann is currently representing Lichtenstein national U21 team in the European U21 Championship qualifiers. At the end of his program EduKick helped Sam to obtain a trial with English Championship professional team Peterborough FC and they asked him to return for a further trial during their pre-season training but Sam decided to return home to Switzerland and concentrate on his academics while playing semi-professional close to home so he signed contract with FC Emmenbrücke. Sam then moved on to Swiss 3rd division professional club SC Kriens representing their U21 squad where his performances got the attention of the Lichtenstein national squad.
Nazar Kmit from Ukraine is an EduKick Alumni who is currently playing professionally in the Ukraine 2nd Division for FC Skala. Nazar earned a trial at Preston North End of the English Football League 1st Division during his time at EduKick and remained focused and determined to play football professionally after returning home. Nazar completed a successful trail at FC Skala and represented them well at youth team level and his hard work paid off with a call up the senior squad where he has become an important member of the squad.
Nico Muniz aged 20 from New Mexico, USA attended EduKick Madrid Year Long program during 2010 and returned to EduKick Madrid for the 2013 season during which time he has been training and on trial with Spanish 3rd Division professional team C.F.Pozuelo de Alarcon . Nico also attended a trial with EduKick Madrid affiliate Spanish 3rd division Club AD Colmenar in 2011 as well as spending time with MLS Club side Real Salt Lake.
EduKick Alumni Eric Behrens from Germany has signed a contract with English Championship club Derby County Youth Academy. Eric attended the 2012/13 EduKick Manchester Academy where he initially caught the attention of the Manchester City Youth Academy coaches and attended several training sessions and played in a trail match for the club. Eric then also attended a trial with Aston Villa before being offered a contract with Derby after a successful trial period.
"Thanks guys...It was a great year. As you know, we had 2 goals coming into this program: find a safe; hospitable; loving (I use that word because I felt every one of your staff showed that to Quinn and myself when I visited); professional environment that would allow a young kid to learn/experience the ins and outs of becoming a professional football player. Secondly, to secure some reputable relationships with UK teams and professionals that we could leverage for the 2014 season that would trend us down the path of scholarship football in a professional football setting.
In my opinion, I think both of those goals exceeded our expectations and I owe it to you guys for helping us find our way over this last year. I want to personally thank you for giving me the confidence that you always had Quinn's best interests in mind. You gave me total peace of mind that he was always in a safe environment where he was surrounded by well-intentioned adults who allowed Quinn to mature at his own pace. Much success for the 2013-14 season and I look forward to chatting with you more in the near future.”
Sean Bredin – Father of Quinn Bredin aged 15 – Canada
I would like to express to you and the staff in Madrid how happy my husband and I were with the Madrid Edukick program, Jye has had the most wonderful 6 months of his life and a very special thank you to all of the Edukick Madrid staff for caring and looking after our son so well. This program has given him the opportunity to live and embrace another culture whilst playing a sport he has loved from a very early age under the professional guidance of I believe to be perfect mentors for young youth of today. Jye has established truly great friendships with the other boys, friendships he will have for ever regardless of the geographic distance between them. Thank you all kindly for a wonderful program.
Dyan & Steve Thais – Parents of Jye aged 16 – Australia<
For Cody, Edukick was a truly amazing experience! He met other boys from all over the world and made lasting friendships. The soccer training and facilities were excellent. The boys received daily training from a professional coach and from that he learned so much in terms of soccer skills and how to develop as a better player. Cody was 17 when he left for Italy. He travelled totally on his own from Canada to EduKick Italy which was a bit worrisome for us, but the staff at Edukick were there to meet him at the airport in Rome as soon as he arrived. They even arranged for me to have Cody call us as soon as he got off the plane. As a parent I had no worries while he was living abroad. The staff at Edukick promptly address any questions you may have during your son's stay and they are always supervised on guided cultural excursions.
As far as his academic studies, it has been very positive. Cody has always been an excellent student and he did very well through the school year. He is now fairly fluent in Italian which is very impressive. He also took a graphic design course which was part of his curriculum and he has really developed as an artist. He learned amazing techniques and skills in drawing. Through the school year, we received updates on what the boys had been up to and with lots of pictures and videos, which I really enjoyed. We also got reports from his school. Overall, it was a fantastic, unforgettable experience for our son. Thank you!
Ryan, 16 year old EduKick player from Russia talks about improving English language skills and football in EduKick's year-long academy in England.
William, 14 year old player from Australia. He talks about the first intense week of training at EduKick year-long academic boarding school.
Miguel from Kenya talks about football training at Edukick year-long boarding school in England working towards his dream of becoming a professional football player.
References for Italy “Year-Long” Soccer Boarding School Program:
Argentine soccer star, Jorge Coch supports EduKick. "Having known Joey for years, both in coaching and as fathers, I would recommend this program to any kid interested in learning Spanish and receiving top level soccer training.
Coch is featured here with friend Diego Maradona.
Cesar Plasencia, Cesar Plasencia, ex-professional soccer player and current Women's soccer coach at Consumnes River College in Sacramento, CA, supports EduKick." Bilotta and Zimmerman are a great team. Parents should know that their children will be under the care of seasoned and caring professionals. EduKick programs always have a positive and lasting influence on all participating youth."
Cesar is featured above with EduKick's Joseph Bilotta in the middle and Alex Basso on the far right during a match in the American Professional Soccer League (APSL).
Arie Haan, Dutchman and Head Coach of Tianjin Teda FC of China Supports and Recommends Edukick to both boys and girls around the world.
Arie Haan, World Cup Champions with Holland, played for many teams including Ajax of Amsterdam with Johan Cryuff & next to Johan Neeskens (3 time European champions, twice UEFA Champions, 3 titles in Holland), Anderlecht and Standard de Liege of Belgian 1st Division where he won 3 Belgian cups, two trips to EURO Cup, and 3 Belgian League Cups, and finally for PSV Eindhoven in 1983 before hanging up his boots to coach. Arie Haan coached many top level club teams including Feyenoord of Holland, VfB Stuttgart (Where he led them to 2 UEFA Cup Final in 1989), Nurnberg, POAK Saloniki , & 3 National Teams including China, Cameroon, & currently Albania.
I am responsible for bringing Greg Morancey to Belgium. His athleticism, character, & desire to learn caught my attention when he was 9 years old. Raymond Goethals, Marten Lippens & myself traveled to America and assessed his skills & his desire to play & found it refreshing. We invited him to experience a similar program as EduKick in Belgium. He excelled immediately & was signed a few years later to 2nd Division Royal Sporting Charleroi. I recommend EduKick as my relationship with Greg has been a bright spot in my life & in a players success and I know his experience here in Belgium was the reason for his past & continued success today in the both football & speaking languages.
Greg Morancey 12 yr FIFA pro
"I Support EduKick!
As one of the first American youths to be trained and play for Royal Sporting Charleroi, in Belgian 2nd Division in late 70's and early 80's, I highly recommend this program. The character and world educational skills and experiences I received were priceless. The EduKick program offers soccer players from around the globe a similar opportunity which I had, which definitely had a great effect on my becoming a professional player. The EduKick program offers everyone something unique and special." Morancey is featured here with friends Pele and Kevin Grubb during a commercial shooting produced by Pizza Hut for The World Cup in the U.S.
UCLA Psychology Professor & Founder of Quantum Soccer Club, Dr. Paul Abramson supports EduKick. "I highly recommend this program. Joey Bilotta is an excellent teacher. He is a kid-friendly, enthusiastic person with bilingual skills and extensive experience in youth programs."
Dr. Jorge Santana, Professor of Spanish at the California State University at Sacramento, supports EduKick. Joey was my assistant when we conducted the California/Spain Cultural Exchange. He is an experienced traveler in Spain and an excellent director of programs. Kids feel comfortable with him and his background in counseling, teaching and youth programs suits him well for directing this program abroad." Email Dr. Santana
This was a REMARKABLE experience for my son. I was concerned about sending him initially because he was fairly young (12 yrs) and is a bit immature. The idea of him being overseas without parent supervision was a little scary. However, I couldn’t have asked for a better result!!!! I didn’t necessarily expect him to come back a significantly better soccer player, but he did improve on the ball. My hopes for him were to gain the cultural enrichment of being in another country, developing friendships with kids from other countries, learning another language (even at a basic level) and maybe mature a bit too, all while not losing any time on a ball. My expectations were SURPASSED!! All of the above happened…. And on a level I didn’t think was possible in 3 short weeks! My son’s confidence in himself on and off the pitch was enhanced significantly from his EduKick experience. Playing the “friendlies” against the local teams was eye opening to him…. He couldn’t get over the difference in the skill level of the overseas kids. It made him step up his game. He has been home now for almost 2 months and is still emailing with friends he made from all over the world!!! He came home and immediately said “Mom… I wanna go back next Summer!”… He has recruited his best friend to join him. His soccer I.Q. went up quite a bit as a result of his EduKick experience and so did his maturity level. Additionally, he has a strong base in the Spanish language, which will help tremendously in school this year. Getting into an environment where he had to be more independent made him grow in so many ways both as a soccer player and as a young man; and the training kept him “on track” to come home and get right back to his club team. I really was worried about sending him…. But now I’m SO GLAD I did!! If someone has a child who is a “soccer kid”… There is NO WAY that child won’t benefit from a program like EduKick…. There is so much more to this program than just soccer. SEE YOU NEXT SUMMER!!!!
“My son, Max, attended the Madrid program this summer and I would like to commend both your program and your staff for giving him the experience of a lifetime. All your staff from the guide at the airport in New York to the trainers were all professional and looked after the kids at all times. Max could not stop talking about his time with edukick when he came back and he is looking forward to next summer with your program.….”
“I’m writing to you from rainy England to thank you very much for all the hard work you put into edukick. I had the time of my life in Perugia this year, making friends for life, and playing the game I live for. The coaching and organization were first class and I have memories that will stay with me forever. “
“When Max returned from camp he said "I wish I could have stayed for another month"… and it was his first sleep-away camp.” He is the only freshman at his highschool to make the varsity team. The hotel environment was fun and he made some good friends"
Ashley Siles Age: 17 Melbourne, Australia Madrid Elite #1 & # 2
"The experience was terrific both as a cultural event and in skills improvement. I would recommend it to anyone. In fact I have enrolled again for next year".
"As a parent my main wish is for my son to achieve his hopes and dreams and the camp seems to have further inspired his soccer aspirations. Also he was looked after professionally. I felt he was in safe hands. Thank you Edukick"
Nejc Ribic Age: 17 Slovenske Konjice, Slovenia Bolton Summer Camp
I enjoyed my stay in Bolton and would like to thank all the staff for their patience, kindness and good will. Many thanks to the host mother Gwen Naylor for her extraordinary good cooking and support. Thanks to coach Chris for his enthusiasm, knowledge and effort.
Nejc Ribic firstname.lastname@example.org
Shane Longpre Age: 13 Somerset, England Rome
”This is wonderful trip. Shayne is getting as good soccer coaching and playing as we have seen anywhere. Claudio has been fantastic and has worked hard to help us out and make our stay very enjoyable. Shayne has fit in well with the boys on the soccer team and is having a great time.”
David Dreher Age: 17 Hollywood, Florida Mexico month Long (2007)
Hi. I just talked to Ana and her mom. They were very positive. Ana said she had a great time, would definitely recommend the program. She liked the Cosilion family very much, said the kids were really well behaved, and that they couldn’t have been nicer. She said the Cosilion’s don’t speak much English, so it was good that she knew some Spanish from the get go (I am happy about that!!!).
"Our son Neil is currently enrolled in the EduKick England Blackburn Rovers FC year-long football course and it's everything EduKick promised and much more! My son is receiving quality professional soccer training daily and the Football Studies course at the college is just perfect for him. I am more than happy to be a reference if anyone wants to hear from an existing client." - Richard Hough, Downers Grove, IL, USA
“We would love to participate in being an EduKick reference! I want you to know that Stevie is really enjoying Spanish this year. His experience in Spain has really made him see things differently, the words mean more and the expressions bring back fond memories of his trip. Stevie is playing for the school soccer team and a premier team this year so the EduKick training worked. Thanks!”
“My daughter Jessica Hershfield had an amazing time in Madrid this year! It was a well rounded experience including all the components you promised. She will always remember her summer abroad with EduKick! Thanks so much and regards to all the coaches and teachers. Jess said it is a real family!"
"Everything about the EduKick Italy soccer camp was fantastic, I had a spectacular time!"
Aaron Shearer email@example.com
“I thought the EduKick Italy camp was amazing! I got to meet lots of new people. The soccer training and both of the full day excursions were fantastic! Thanks for the great experience.” - Lucas Pingatore, 13
“Having visited and seen the Italy camp first hand…I was very pleased to see the organization and care for the campers. The quality of training and facilities along with excellent Italian coaches made it a quality soccer camp. I would send my son back any time.”
EduKick participant, Brett Shannon (left), a 16 year old from Oakville, Canada says, “Thank you so much for giving me the chance to experience something that will most likely stay with me for the rest of my life. The trip was more fun than I ever could have imagined! The whole program was superbly organized and the Spanish teachers were very good….I can now have basic conversations in Spanish and have a pretty large vocabulary too!”
Dear Mr. Bilotta,
Thank you very much for helping Mike during the EduKick Spain trip. He really enjoyed the program and the experience. He would be able to write something about this program and the excellent experience he had if you need an essay or anything from a student who experienced this program for publishing purposes, please just feel free to ask. Thank you very much again and take care.
Kikyung Park (mother of 16 year old EduKick participant Mike Park)
Paolo Ferretti (left), 16 years old from Oakland, CA says, “I am just writing you to check in. EduKick really inspired me! I have started working on my game a lot by myself. Everyday that I do not have soccer practice I do 300 squats and 150 crunches. I spent 40 minutes a day working out …20 minutes of strait juggling and 20 minutes of working on my left foot. With my left foot I pass the ball 1000 times against a brick wall (like you told me to do) and when I play I am not as scared to use my left foot and it has improved. Right now all that I can think about is becoming a pro soccer player. I will put soccer in front of everything except for school of course. Hope to hear from you soon.” -Paolo
“Just wanted to tell you what a great time Noah had in Spain. He loved playing soccer, living with his host mother, making Spanish, Canadian, and American friends, and cruising the town. Noah learned a great deal of Spanish and feels much more comfortable in his Spanish IV class in high school. Even the 110 degree heat did not dampen his enjoyment.”
-Laura (mother of 16 year old EduKick player, Noah Buncher)
“With EduKick I immediately made great friends with kids from all over the US and Canada, and we got along very well. The coaches at the camp were very knowledgeable and the soccer program overall was a great learning experience! If you are someone looking to improve your soccer skills, learn a language, looking for things to put on your college apps, and want to have a "real" summer, this is a perfect program for you!”
“We would love to participate in being an EduKick reference! I want you to know that Stevie is really enjoying Spanish this year. His experience in Spain has really made him see things differently, the words mean more and the expressions bring back fond memories of his trip. Stevie is playing for the school soccer team and a premier team this year so the EduKick training worked. Thanks!
"My perception of EduKick is a very positive one, as a parent I was rather satisfied with Joey's constant reassurances and organizational skills. I'd give EduKick 9 out of 10...overall they deserve very high marks for their efforts and the results they achieved. I know my son Alex had a great time, felt very secure, and enjoyed EduKick's program immensely. He came home a very happy boy with not one single negative comment to make. If you'd like to use me as a reference, please go ahead and do so. Regards,"
Jordi Huguet, (Father of 16 year old Alex from San Ramon, CA)
“During the summer, my daughter, Rachael, accompanied EduKick to Spain for a Soccer/Spanish Language Camp; she returned home with a higher level of enthusiasm and comprehension of the Spanish language and she engaged her talents daily with the EduKick intense soccer schedule. EduKick was available 24/7 for this Mom and Dad who, of course, were anxious to allow their 17 year old daughter to travel to Spain. The end result left Rachael with a wealth of new friends, with whom she shares a lifetime bond and with whom she continues to communicate. I’m grateful her Dad and I were able to provide her with this opportunity and that we found this well-rounded camp to provide the experience.”
“EduKick Spain was Amazing! This was a totally awesome opportunity, being immersed into a completely new culture gives you a chance to see world as you've never seen it before. I've also made some great friends in Spain and around the world that I still talk to now. The soccer itself was something else, the opportunity to play with such amazing soccer players was a dream come true. The Spanish coaches did an outstanding job conducting the soccer sessions…and after even a week of training we were noticeably better! Over all the EduKick trip was great; I would do it again in a heart beat"
Claudia Nobauer (center), 17 year old from Vancouver, B.C., Canada)
"Our son attended the Edukick Spain program this past summer. He came home with improved Spanish speaking capabilities as well as a better comprehension of the language. We were very impressed by the management of our child while he was abroad. There were plenty of sport and cultural activities for him and he enjoyed the language classes. I would recommend this trip for anyone who wants to improve their child's language skills while providing a safe and pleasant environment."
”I was thirteen years old when I went to the Edukick camp in Spain. I was an average soccer/futbol player and my Spanish was terrible. When I came back I found that both my Spanish and my soccer improved greatly! Overall, I had a great time and am considering going to another Edukick camp this upcoming summer. -Tom Fenwick
"Overall, we think the Edukick camp was a very good experience for Tom who is now in 8th grade. Edukick had the travel and living arrangements well organized. Joey is extremely personable and made Tom feel at ease in the group. This was very important as Tom was one of the younger kids in the group. Tom has gained a broader perspective of the world, improved on his soccer skills and benefited from the language immersion. He now actually understands Spanish when spoken and is getting good grades in his language courses."
Dorothea Fenwick ( mother of 13 year old son, Tom, Linwood, New Jersey)
Established international football icons such as France National Team Coach Michel Hidalgo, Spain National Team Coach Luis Aragones, Belgian's champions Anderlecht, Standard Liege, and Dutch National Team player Arie Haan, Brazil's
Belo Horizonte's Cruzeiro Esporte Clube, Perugia, Italy's Bruno
Redolfi, Barclay's English Premier League's Manchester Football Club, England National Team, AC Milan, Real Madrid player, and MLS champions LA Galaxy's Beckham, or Colombia Assistant National Team Coach Leonel Alvarez all support EIFA's "Football and Education" philosophy. EIFA - EduKick International Football Academies.
About EduKick Inc.
EduKick International Football Academies (EIFA)
The Leader in International Residential Football & Education Academies
Our Mission: To operate the world's leading international soccer/football and education academy boarding schools; building strong business relationships in a vibrant, creative and ethical international football environment. To teach, inspire and create the best technical footballers possible and create international students with inter-cultural competence (ICC) enabling them to compete in the modern competitive world.
Based in Toronto, Canada, EduKick Inc.'s (EIFA) world famous international football boarding schools were founded in 2001 by ex-professional American footballer Joey Bilotta to provide international soccer players football and education academy courses worldwide.
EduKick's website features a wide selection of top-of-the-line academic year (year-long) international football academies, month long football courses, professional club soccer trial program, and residential soccer camps with training provided by world-class football coaches, and teams from around the world. You want to be the best? Then you have to train with the best. EduKick has been the best for 10 years and running! There's one simple reason we have the best international football academies and residential soccer camps on the planet: