Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Game Leader Program

Game leading was an innovation by Ontario Soccer and Canada Soccer several years ago, intended to bridge the gap between coaching and refereeing. Young players, particularly U6, U7, and U8 players, benefit from neither rigid coaching nor rigid refereeing; they require an individual who can both guide them on their development journey as players, but also teach them the laws of the game in an age-appropriate manner. The Game Leader seamlessly does both!

Game Leaders perform both the functions of a referee (in calling outs, goals, and fouls as appropriate), and a coach (in providing technical feedback to players). We find it beneficial for all of our recreational staff – whether interested in a coaching or refereeing path – to be involved in Game Leading early on in their career. This approach allows our staff to see the game from multiple angles, and appreciate the benefits and challenges that come with each of coaching or refereeing. It promotes the idea that coaches and referees are not “on opposite sides” (as has so often been suggested), but rather play on the same team – trying to create the best possible developmental environment for players.

Recreational staff at North Toronto, whether on the coaching or refereeing path, can expect to be scheduled for game leading as a part of their work. As such, we will ask all new staff (or returning staff if they have not done so already) to complete the 45-minute Ontario Soccer Game Leading course (online). Game leaders are supported by program leadership (the Manager of Recreation and Head Referee) as well as a strong team of recreation supervisors.

Monday–Friday: 10 am - 6 pm

North Toronto Soccer Club
1041 Avenue Rd. Suite 5
Toronto, Ontario
M5N 2C5