Youngsters from two primary schools represented Hartlepool in the finals of a Teesside wide football tournament hosted by promotion winning Middlesbrough.
Children from Clavering and West View primary schools were among only 10 schools that qualified for the finals of the Lee Stephenson Cup.
The annual tournament is held at the club’s Rockliffe Park training complex in Hurworth near Darlington.
It is open to boys and girls in school Years 3 and 4, and is named after avid Boro fan Lee, who sadly died in 2014.
Clavering and West View primary schools qualified for the memorable event as winners of the Hartlepool round of the cup which took place at the Sports Domes in Seaton Carew.
Clavering deputy headteacher Neil McAvoy said: “The day will stay in the memories of both sets of children for the rest of their lives.
“They were a credit to the town and whilst watching them play, it is easy to forget how young they are.
“We would like to thank Middlesbrough Football Club for this amazing opportunity and we will certainly be keen to qualify again next year when Middlesbrough will, of course, be playing in the Premier League!”
Although neither of the Hartlepool schools won the football tournament they had a great day with Clavering just missing out on a place in the semi-finals.
And the children enjoyed a tour of Middlesbrough’s training facilities and even got the chance to meet a number of the first team players.
The cup competition was organised by the Middlesbrough FC Foundation and Academy and is open to schools across the Tees Valley and surrounding areas.
Middlesbrough FC Foundation’s School Sport Coordinator Natalie Guy said: “It has been a fantastic tournament throughout and a fantastic experience for the young players. We’d like to thank everyone who entered, as well as those who worked hard to help it run so smoothly.”