Moves Atletico Ottawa Could Make this Summer

Moves Atletico Ottawa Could Make this Summer

With over ¼ of the CPL season completed, teams at the bottom half of the table such as Atletico Ottawa should be looking at the transfer market to try to find that key piece or pieces that are missing from completing their team and getting the results needed to get to and maintain a playoff spot. 


The summer transfer window for the CLP opens up on July 5th and closes on August 2nd. This doesn’t leave much time for CPL clubs to sign players. 

Some background on Atletico Ottawa first before we dive into who could be potential candidates for the team to sign. 

  • The roster currently has 23/23 spots filled with 1 of those spots being taken up by an emergency goalkeeper while Nathan Ingham recovers from an injury. This leaves just 1 open roster spot unless the team sells/trades/lets go of a player.
  • Five out of the seven international spots are filled. It is important to keep in mind that at all times, 50% of all CPL Club’s International Players must be U23 (born January 1 st, 2000 or later). If a CPL Club wishes to utilize the maximum seven (7) International Players, the 7 th signed International Player must be U21 (born January 1st, 2002 or later). Ottawa currently has ⅖ players U23. This means if the team was to bring in two internationals with the current roster one would have to be U23 and one would have to be U21.

Ottawa has really three main roles that the team could/should be looking to fill on the transfer market. To find players I am looking at and am going to assume that Ottawa is not going to pay a transfer fee, will look to sign a Canadian, isn’t going to acquire from within the CPL itself or acquire former players. This leaves either free agents or players out of contract this summer.

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Defensive Midfielder

 It has already been publicly confirmed that Atletico Ottawa is looking to sign a CDM or number six role.

Free Agent’s

  • Jeff Addai
    • 30 years old
    • From Ottawa and originally signed for Ottawa Fury back in 2015
    • Duel Canadian and Ghanian
    • Last played for PEPO Lappeenranta in the Finish 3rd tier
    • Can also play at Right Back
  • Mehdi Essoussi
    • 22 years old
    • Born in Tunisia
    • Duel Canadian and Dutch
    • Last played for TFC 2
Mehdi Essoussi (ECE Year 1) shakes off a defender in a game against Colorado Rapids in Houston. (Mehdi Essoussi)

Out of Contract

  • Matthew Joseph Barsalona
    • Plays for Dynamo Schwerin in the German 5th tier
    • Contract is up June 30th
    • 29 years old
    • 10 appearances for the club since joining in August 2022
  • Rohun Kawale
    • Plays for CDC Montalegre in Portugal 3rd tier
    • Contract up June 30th
    • 23 years old
    • 9 appearances for the club since January 2022

Centre Forward

It’s well known that Ottawa struggles at times with their forward’s productivity. Sam Salter hasn’t been able to find his grove with the team yet and Malcolm Shaw only has one goal this season so far. 

Sam Salted has yet to make a big impact yet for Ottawa ( Salter finds space against his former side at a neutral venue. (Photo Credit: John Jacques)

Free Agents

  • Aramis Kouzine
    • 24 years old
    • From Markham Ontario
    • Has played for clubs in Ukraine, Denmark, Kazakhstan, Faroe Islands
    • Last played for AB Argir in the first tier of the Faroe Islands

Out of Contract

  • Eldin Demiri
    • 25 years old
    • Played in Germany, Finland, and Kosovo 
    • Out of contract on June 30th

Centre Back

Ottawa is known for its defensive ability but in reality if either one of Espejo or Singh goes out injured for an extended period of time then there is no one to fill that gap, and the defence could be on some shaky legs.

Ottawa are lacking defensive cover should a starter such as Diego Espejo get injured – Tim Austen / Freestyle Photography

Free Agents

  • Dante Lyte
    • 25 years old
    • From Toronto
    • Plays as a Defensive Midfielder or Right Back as well
    • Duel Canadian and Italian
    • Last played for Merani Tbilisi in the Georgian second tier

Out of Contract

  • Frank Sturing
    • Out of contract June 30th
    • 26 years old
    • Plays for SV Horn in Latvia second tier
    • Played in the Netherlands previously
Frank Sturing takes part in a drill at the Canadian men’s soccer team training camp in Bradenton, Fla. in a Jan. 13, 2021. /THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Ottawa could go ahead and sign someone international as well but that doesn’t really make much sense as their international roster spots are already fairly well full, unless they happen to find a talent like Sacko again who would be willing to go on a free transfer and is a U23 or U21.

This list is just some very primary research into who is available for Ottawa in a CDM, Forward and CB position should they choose to sign someone there. Jeff Addai makes the most sense, with his connection to the city, having previously played for Ottawa Fury and Ottawa’s dire need for a real CDM player. 


There is also the possibility that they get a player from Atletico Madrid to come over on loan, but that is a bit further fetched just due to the international roster slots available. 

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