Ed. – June 2015. This story was published in August 2013 for a tryout that took place in November 2013. Given that several soccer players have posted comments below after November 2013, we wanted to make it clear that the tryout has long since passed. As well, while Apartment613 is proud to cover arts, culture and sports in the National Capital Region, which includes the Ottawa Fury FC, we are not affiliated with the soccer club. If you want to play for the Ottawa Fury FC you should contact the club directly at firstname.lastname@example.org and send your email to the attention of Marc Dos Santos.
Professional sports teams don’t often hold open tryouts for the general public. Ottawa Fury FC, however, is planning on doing just that this coming fall, by giving aspiring soccer players a chance to become a professional athlete.
“We are doing it for two reasons,” says Fury coach Marc Dos Santos, when asked why the team is holding an open tryout. “The first is to see players who have played in the past in a professional league…. Players who got lost in the system but who only need a chance. The second is because you never know who may show up.”
The Ottawa Fury are scheduled to begin play in the North American Soccer League (NASL) as an expansion team in the spring of 2014. The NASL is the second highest level of professional soccer in Canada and the United States, just one level below Major League Soccer.
Scheduled for November 20-21, the open tryout will take place at the Ben Franklin Superdome in Nepean, in the city’s west end. Interested players can register online at a cost of $50. The registration deadline is October 31, with applicants being notified on or before November 1 if they will be invited to the tryout.
Players interested in becoming a member of the Ottawa Fury should be aware of the stiff competition that they will likely face.
“You need to understand that the level of the NASL is quite good,” says Dos Santos, who previously coached soccer in Brazil, as well as being the former head coach of the Montreal Impact. “If you have never played in a professional league, or for a team like Canada’s youth national under seventeen team, … then your chances may be quite difficult.”
To have a realistic chance, players should at a minimum have played at a provincial level. Furthermore, interested applicants should note that all players invited to the November tryout must provide their own transportation, accommodation and meals during their stay in the nation’s capital.
Looking forward, Dos Santos says it’s important for the Fury to build a young team, as he would like players on next year’s roster to still be on the team in 2015 and beyond.
As for how the National Capital Region will embrace a local professional soccer club, Montreal-born Dos Santos says he sees a lot of potential.
“I don’t know a lot about Ottawa in terms of soccer,” says Dos Santos, who was only announced as the Fury’s coach this past spring. “But what I do know is that some of the games at Lansdowne – which is not the Lansdowne that we are going to get – there were 20,000 people in the stands for the (2007) U-20 World Cup.”