Soccer Players from BC well Represented

With the introduction of the BC Soccer Premier League six years ago, as well as more comprehensive youth programming introduced and operated by the Vancouver Whitecaps FC as they transitioned into MLS, BC Soccer has worked with its Membership and Stakeholders to set in place a clearer and recognized player development pathway. The primary goals are to better support players in their individual development, have more BC based players selected to participate in these professional operated programs, with the ultimate objective of having a higher percentage of players from BC (compared to BC’s total BC player population within Canada) on Canadian Soccer youth national teams.

BC Soccer’s 2016 – 2019 Strategic Plan, sets the quantifiable objective and BC Soccer has been measuring the number of players that have progressed beyond the Provincial Program and into these higher level development programs, specifically the Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency program (Male), BC REX program (Female), and youth national teams from the under 15 to under 18 age groups. By tracking this progression, the information supports assessing the appropriateness of the various programming operated by BC Soccer (Provincial Program) and those it directly supports, including the BCSPL.

“In all areas of youth development soccer (U5 – U18), we must change the measurement of success, away from the short term such as winning games, leagues and cups. There needs to be a shift towards the long-term commitment of focusing on individual player development within the team and measure progress as the number of players that move to higher levels of programming as well as players that stay in the game”. Stated Chris Cerroni, Director of Soccer Development, BC Soccer. “This doesn’t de-value competition, as this is part of developing players, but it does make it clear that the pursuit of winning is secondary to the responsibility of developing youth players from ages 5 – 18. The aim is to give the players the tools to win when it counts in adult soccer”. Chris stressed.

Table 1, supported by the chart below provide a snapshot of the percentage of female and male players from BC that represent roster spots on the Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency (male) and BC REX (female) and on Canada Soccer youth national team selection.

Table 1: BC players selected for U14 – U18 Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency (male) and BC REX (female)

Year Number of Players from BC Total Available Roster Spots % of Representation
2011 72 91 79%
2012 74 106 70%
2013 64 83 77%
2014 61 84 73%
2015* 96 111 87%
2016 78 103 76%
2017** 87 122 71%

*BC REX program introduced.
**BC REX program became a Super REX and players selected from Western Provinces as well.

Chart 1: The percentage of male and female BC based players selected to roster spots for the Under 15 through Under 18 age groups in Canadian Soccer National Team Programming compared to the total BC player percentage of the registered soccer player population in Canada.   

Red = Total percentage of BC based players selected on National Teams
Blue = Total BC player percentage of the registered soccer player population in Canada.  

It is encouraging to see, for example in 2016 BC based players represented 15% of the player population across Canada and represented a higher percentage, 23% of the roster spots available on U15 to U18 National Teams. This is real credit to all involved in BC who are working towards developing players for the higher levels of the game” said Carlos Grosso, High Performance Committee Chair, BC Soccer. 

BC Soccer would like to acknowledge all those who commit to developing players in BC within grassroots club and associate member environments, the eight BCSPL Franchise Clubs and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency and BC REX Programming for all the work and support provided to the soccer community here in BC.

For more information on player development within BC and the numerous of environments that support this please see the links below:

  • BC Soccer Premier League please click HERE
  • BC Soccer Provincial Program please click HERE
  • Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency Program please click HERE
  • BC REX Program, in partnership with the Vancouver Whitecaps FC please click HERE

About BC Soccer

BC Soccer is the provincial sport governing body with the mission to govern, promote and develop the game of soccer in British Columbia in a professional and progressive manner. Established in 1907, BC Soccer is the largest provincial sport organization (PSO) in BC and the third largest soccer specific PSO in Canada with over 150,000 participants.  As a professional not-for-profit society and a member of Canada Soccer, BC Soccer is committed to providing the widest opportunities for existing and potential participants, as well as provide support in the most effective and appropriate way for current players, parents, volunteers, member clubs, leagues and districts.  

BC Soccer is comprised of more than 120,000 registered players, over 2,200 registered referees, and thousands of volunteer coaches, administrators and soccer leaders. Working with its 40 member Youth Districts and 11 Adult Leagues as well as their affiliate member clubs, BC Soccer operates under the guiding principles of Professional Leadership, Passionate Service and Progressive Collaboration. In managing its relationships throughout the larger soccer community, BC Soccer’s vision is to ensure every British Columbian has the opportunity to be involved in soccer as part of a lifelong commitment to active, health and involved lifestyle