The Ontario Soccer Association has a long history in Canada and over half a million registered participants. Headquartered in Vaughan, Ontario, the association was established in 1901 and has a membership of 21 district associations at present.
The Ontario Soccer Association is one of the well-established, oldest, and largest associations in Canada and the largest provincial organization. League 1 Ontario was established much later (in 2003) with a statement by the Ontario Soccer Association and as a semi-professional women’s and men’s soccer league.
Affiliated Organizations, Members, and Events
There are a number of affiliated organizations such as OSA-recognized non-club academies, associate members, clubs, leagues, district associations, and others. District associations include the Soccer North District Association, Soccer Northwest Ontario, Ontario Colleges Athletic Association, Niagara S.A., the Provincial Indoor Soccer League, and many others. They comply with CSA and FIFA governing documents and OSA operational procedures, policies, and bylaws. There are 5 types of members – honorary members, life members, professional soccer clubs, associate members, and active members. Life members, for example, are Clive Wilkinson, Jack Strachan, Alan Southard, George MacDonald, and others.
Various competitions take place throughout the year such as international games and national club championships as well as provincial competitions, special events, and tournaments. Provincial competitions, for example, include the Ontario Futsal Cup, Ontario Indoor Cup, and Ontario Cup. There are also special events such as the Annual Awards Banquet organized by the Ontario Soccer Association and the Hall of Fame and Museum Inductees Banquet. Tournaments are also organized throughout the year such as the March Break Tournaments, Family Day Charity Scramble Tournaments, and Christmas Indoor Tournaments. Finally, league competitions are organized as well, along with tournaments at the local, district, regional, and provincial level. The goal is to teach young players to compete for enjoyment and pursue high quality and competitive excellence. There are other competitions at different levels such as the Quebec/Ontario Cup, the Masters – Classics Provincial Championship, Western Masters Women, Eastern Masters Men, and others. Some championships and competitions are organized on an annual basis while others take place every other year (the National Club Competition is one example).
Prospects and Future Developments
In 2015, the Ontario Soccer Association announced plans to provide sports management technology to participants, academies, leagues, clubs, districts, and tournaments. Participants and member associations will also benefit from safe and secure payment processing, reporting, easy registration, enhanced program promotion, and advanced mobile capabilities. The association has access to mobile apps and web-based software designed for professional, amateur, and youth sports. There are also handy tools to communicate with a host of interested parties, including sponsors, journalists, fans, volunteers, referees, coaches, administrators, parents, athletes, and others.
There are different tournaments and plays scheduled to take place, including the Ontario Cup semi-finals and finals. Dates have been posted for U-14 girls and boys, U-13 girls and boys, U-15 boys Tier 2 and 1, U-16 girls, etc. Dates have been scheduled for senior women and senior men as well. To ensure compliance with policies and regulations, there are various committees in place such as the Central Region League Management Committee, League Management Committee, Discipline and Appeals Committee, and others.
Watching Soccer Games on Canadian TV
There are many Canadian sports channels broadcasting professional soccer games including MLS league, English Premier League, Bundesliga, and La Liga, and you can find TV listings for soccer matches at http://www.tvsoccer.ca.