Player Pathway

The Ottawa City Soccer Club supports players of all ages, levels, and ambitions through age-and-skill appropriate training and games for recreational players, competitive single sport athletes who dream of playing soccer professionally, and multi-sport athletes who require more flexibility and understanding.

Led by experienced, knowledgeable, and passionate soccer minds, our competitive and Surf programs provide exceptional quality training and a complete pathway for elite players and our “best of the best”.

Our values: The cornerstone of each program

We infuse our club’s values into each program and level to developing the person as well as the player.
Excellence: Strive to be the best of the best in everything you do. Commit to continuously improving.
Effort: If you put in the work, the results will come. Whatever your 100% looks like, give it. Never quit.
Accountability: Accept responsibility before placing blame. Own lessons, not just goals and wins.
Focus: Take care of the details. Channel your energy. What you focus on grows.
Teamwork: When individual players selflessly act as one, success takes care of itself – on the field and in life.
Sportsmanship: Play with respect, fairness, integrity, and discipline.
Pride: When you care about what you do, you get better at it. Improvement builds confidence: the key to all locks.

Five pillars of the game

We design each aspect of our programs to promote development across the five pillars of the game:


Working on specific skills to improve players’ control of the ball.

  • First touch
  • Control
  • Passing
  • Receiving
  • Finishing
  • Striking
  • Dribbling

Analysis of play to allow players to learn and adapt in different situations and strategies.

  • Knowledge
  • Vision
  • Awareness
  • Anticipation
  • Speed of play
  • Decision making

Quality training to be fit, agile, and strong to be able to physically perform on the field.

  • Speed
  • Agility
  • Endurance
  • Power
  • Strength

Teaching players about sports psychology and giving players the tools to help them overcome adversity, improve their resilience and increase their understanding of mental health.

  • Attitude
  • Work ethic
  • Motivation
  • Dedication
  • Mental toughness

Creating an enjoyable environment that supports and challenges players while encouraging:

  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Leadership
  • Coach-ability
  • Punctuality
  • Accountability
  • Responsibility


We coach players to excel in these areas of the game:

  • Play and run into forward space
  • All types of crosses
  • Overlaps and underlaps
  • Deceptive passes
  • Threaten with runs
  • 1v1 specialists
  • Various positions/spaces to occupy
  • Positional balance: minimal distances
  • 7:1 movements to unmark and receive
  • Arrival movements
  • If you can’t find a free player, keep possession
  • 1v1 outplay
  • Light switch transition
  • Press with your brain
  • Press with your heart
  • Eleven pressing
  • Aggressive positioning
  • Controlling tempo
  • Breaking lines of press
  • Circulation until free player arrives
  • Limit Space
  • Set the trap wide
  • Press from the front
  • Defend as early as possible


As players age and progress through our club’s various programs, we elaborate upon foundational concepts and gradually expand the game and field surface so that developing players benefit from consistencies without constantly having to re-learn the game. Our youngest players start in 4 vs 4 player games and the game format eventually transitions to 7 vs 7, 9 vs 9, and 11 vs 11 over the years.