- Shevchenko delivers a moving Team Talk at Gatorade’s 5v5 tournament, where he revealed his most inspiring coach, shares insights on why Italian manager Carlo Ancelotti is so successful and opens up about the advice he’s given players in the past
- The Team Talk comes as global data reveals over four in ten (41%) parents believe that a lack of confidence and self-esteem prevent teens from taking up sport
- The annual Gatorade 5v5 grassroots tournament is committed to inspiring young players, whilst instilling them with confidence and self-belief
LONDON, June 19, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Today, Gatorade launches an inspirational Team Talk video featuring Ukrainian football star and 2004 Ballon d’Or winner Andriy Shevchenko. The video marks Shevchenko’s role as one of Gatorade’s new team of ‘Confidence Coaches’, a move which comes in response to new data revealing that a lack of self-esteem in teenagers is preventing their participation in grassroots sports.
In the emotive video Shevchenko speaks directly to the next generation of footballers, aged between 14-16 years old, at the Gatorade 5v5 tournament in Istanbul.
The former AC Milan striker, who has worked with some of the world’s most renowned football coaches, had this to say about the most inspirational figure in his life: “The coach who inspired me the most is Valeriy Lobanovskyi who was the coach of Dynamo Kyiv. He’s a legend for Ukraine and a legend in world football. He brought discipline to my life, helping me understand that I am a role model, football players are very important figures in society. I understand the responsibility not only for myself, but the image for the country and the club.”
The former Ukraine and Genoa head coach gave the young players a rare glimpse into the advice and guidance he gave to star players whilst he was in charge. He said, “I used to manage the Ukrainian national team and I had great players, like Oleksandr Zinchenko and Andriy Yarmolenko, both world-class players. I always gave them guidance and my advice was to work hard, be disciplined and I emphasised that the best way to achieve success is working for the team. Football is a team game.”
Before conducting a series of football drills and a shooting session with the players, the Champions League winner gave inspiring advice on coming back from a negative situation and how to remain positive. He said, “I lost a couple of Champions League finals, but I never gave up. I always think positively. I’ve always tried to focus on a different challenge.”
Shevchenko had only kind words to say about another inspirational figure in his life, former coach Carlo Ancelotti. He revealed insights into what makes him one of the most successful managers of all time. Shevchenko said, “Carlo Ancelloti is just a very nice and inspiring person. He is very charismatic and has a great relationship with the players, he’s amazing in the dressing room and creates a very good environment and chemistry with the team.”
He continued to discuss his former AC Milan boss, “I learnt a lot about his style in dealing with the staff and how he motivated the players. Sometimes his role was to calm the players in a very difficult emotional moment, he’s a great human being and a great coach.”
Fuelling people forward
Shevchenko’s motivational Team Talk is needed now, perhaps more than ever before. In 2023, Gatorade took steps to identify the barriers that teens face when playing, starting, or staying in sports, by surveying over 2,500 parents of 13-17-year-olds. Over four in 10 people (41%) agreed that a lack of confidence or self-esteem was a barrier, while 44% reported that a lack of visible and relatable role models also contributed to the problem.
Gatorade is committed to fueling everyone forward, regardless of individual sporting ability. This purpose is the driving force behind Gatorade 5v5, the annual grassroots tournament, where Shevchenko issued his rallying cry. At this year’s global finals, Honduras’ AFFI boys’ team and Chile’s Club De Lo Prado girls’ team were crowned global champions. A week prior, the Cruyff Academy, Tilburg lifted the trophy at Gatorade’s all-female five-a-side tournament in Eindhoven.
The Ukrainian player is the second football legend to take on the role of a confidence coach, following the assignment of former England and Arsenal icon Rachel Yankey earlier this month. The former Lioness delivered an emotive Team Talk to female players at Gatorade’s all-female 5v5 tournament, which was captured on video to inspire more future football legends around the world. In the piece Yankey explains how she rebuilt her confidence when she was repeatedly told that ‘girls can’t play football’.
“The stats demonstrate that there is a crisis of confidence in grassroots football,” said Robert Blythe, PepsiCo’s Senior Director, Sports and Hydration. “As young people grapple with self-belief, it has never been more important to unlock the power of sport to help them tackle challenges both on and off the pitch. The Gatorade 5v5 tournament is a great opportunity for budding players to build their confidence whilst showcasing their passion and dedication for the game. Over 126,000 young people from around the world have taken part in the initiative since its inception, allowing the next generation to develop their team skills, build self-belief, and most importantly, have fun!”
Now in its sixth year, Gatorade 5v5 has grown to feature teams from 11 countries, spanning Latin America, Asia, Middle East, and Europe. The tournament’s mission is to support and inspire young players on their journey, whilst instilling them with confidence by offering unique opportunities to reap the benefits of sport.
Gatorade 5v5 national qualifying rounds began in March and saw almost 15,000 competitors vying to be global champions. Gatorade 5v5 has built an international platform; giving over 126,000 boys and girls from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to excel in football, driving positive change within the most deserving global communities. Past winners of Gatorade 5v5 have gone on to build successful professional football careers, and some have even represented their country at major football tournaments.
Inspiring the next generation
Gatorade remains committed to creating life-changing moments for young athletes. Selected MVP’s (most valuable players) from the tournament were invited to take part in a surprise football ‘Legends Match’ against some of the greatest UEFA Champions League superstars. Players included former Spanish international and Liverpool player Luis Garcia, former French international and Arsenal star Robert Pires, Germany and Arsenal legend Josephine Henning, and former Argentinian and Inter Milan striker Diego Milito.
Other legends included former Italian international and Inter Milan midfielder Esteban Cambiasso, as well as former Porto goalkeeper Victor Baía. It was a thrilling match, played in front of the official UEFA Champions League Festival, where the global finals took place.
Staying true to the brand promise of fostering young athletes, all players taking part in the tournament were given unprecedented access to world-class footballing talent and UEFA legends. These mentors offered valuable strategies for on-the-field success, coupled with practical advice to improve mental and physical strength. Additionally, the 5v5 players were introduced to Gx Sweat Patch testing, a unique Gatorade technology that unlocks athletes’ sweat profiles to inform their hydration strategies and help fuel performance. Finally, participating teams received education in sports nutrition and performance via the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI), reinforcing the brand’s societal commitment to inspire the next generation through sports education and participation.
Creating positive change beyond the pitch
Off the pitch, Gatorade ensured the 5v5 tournament was set to the highest sustainable standards, taking measures to implement carbon neutrality via recycling efforts, carbon offsets, and sustainable clothing.
Planet-positive kits were provided to the players, produced using a recycled polyester and cotton blend. To minimise plastic waste on the ground, Gatorade supplied all players with 100% recycled bottles, Gatorade powders, and innovative seaweed pods containing Gatorade.
To create a legacy beyond the tournament, Gatorade 5v5 launched a ‘Play and Stay’ initiative on the ground in Istanbul, as part of the brand’s pep+ end-to-end sustainability strategy to have a lasting positive impact on local communities. The programme will see Gatorade provide access to 200 hours’ worth of free training facilities at the Fenerbahçe Academy, the same location the Gatorade 5v5 tournament took place. These hours will be used by local children, with the ambition of removing barriers so that everyone can access the benefits of football.
Visit www.gatorade5v5.com for further information including rules and regulations.
The Gatorade Company, a division of PepsiCo, provides sports performance innovations designed to meet the needs of athletes at all competitive levels and across a broad range of sports. Backed by more than a 50-year history of studying the best athletes in the world and grounded in years of hydration and sports nutrition research at the Gatorade Sports Science Institute, Gatorade provides scientifically formulated products to meet the sports fuelling needs of athletes in all phases of athletic activity. For more information and a full list of products, please visit www.gatorade.com.
About the Gatorade global data:
The research for Gatorade was carried out by Attest on 23rd March, 2023. It surveyed 2,650 parents of teens (13-17 year olds) to understand the barriers and difficulties young people face starting and staying in sport. The research surveyed parents from the following markets: Mexico, Colombia, Australia, China and the Philippines.
PepsiCo products are enjoyed by consumers more than one billion times a day in more than 200 countries and territories around the world. PepsiCo generated more than $86 billion in net revenue in 2022, driven by a complementary beverage and convenient foods portfolio that includes Lay’s, Doritos, Cheetos, Gatorade, Pepsi-Cola, Mountain Dew, Quaker, and SodaStream. PepsiCo’s product portfolio includes a wide range of enjoyable foods and beverages, including many iconic brands that generate more than $1 billion each in estimated annual retail sales.
Guiding PepsiCo is our vision to Be the Global Leader in Beverages and Convenient Foods by Winning with pep+ (PepsiCo Positive). pep+ is our strategic end-to-end transformation that puts sustainability and human capital at the center of how we will create value and growth by operating within planetary boundaries and inspiring positive change for planet and people. For more information, visit www.pepsico.com, and follow on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn @PepsiCo.
UEFA – the Union of European Football Associations – is the governing body of European football. It is an association of associations and the umbrella organisation for 55 national football associations across Europe. UEFA is a society entered in the register of companies under the Swiss civil code and Its headquarters are located in Nyon, Switzerland. The organs through which UEFA acts are the UEFA Congress, the UEFA Executive Committee, the UEFA President and the organs for the administration of justice. UEFA is responsible for organizing men’s, women’s, youth, amateur and futsal competitions including the UEFA Champions League, the UEFA Europa League, the UEFA Europa Conference League, the UEFA Women’s Champions League, the UEFA European Championship and the UEFA Women’s EURO. Visit UEFA.com for more information about the organization, its numerous activities, programs and campaigns, and follow UEFA on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.
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