Atlético Ottawa signs ex-York attacker, 1st CPL goalscorer Ryan Telfer

The Canadian Premier League’s inaugural goalscorer is back.

Atlético Ottawa announced the signing of Ryan Telfer on Tuesday, bringing the former York United and current Trinidad and Tobago attacker to the nation’s capital for the 2021 season.

The 27-year-old made 39 appearances for York (then York9 FC) across two seasons, scoring ten goals – including the first in league history just over two years ago against Forge FC – and adding three assists.

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Telfer was also the first home goalscorer in York9’s history, the first CPLer to score against an MLS side with his Canadian Championship screamer against the Montreal Impact, and the first CPL player to score for an international team, which he did in September of 2019 for Trinidad and Tobago. He’s since gone on to score four goals in eight games for the Trinidad senior national team – the last of which coming last month against Guyana in a 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier.

Telfer featured in several positions for Jimmy Brennan’s York side in 2019 and 2020, playing both wings, in attacking midfield, and occasionally as a false nine or centre-forward.

“We had an idea of what we were getting when we signed Ryan, but he has exceeded our expectations and impressed with his physical and technical quality,” Ottawa coach Mista said. “Our fans should look forward to what he brings to our club.”

Telfer, who played for York9 on loan from Toronto FC in 2019, signed with top flight Cyprus side Nea Salamina Famagusta in January of 2020 after having been released by his MLS club. Telfer only made three appearances for the Cypriot club, starting just once, and returned to York when his contract expired for the Island Games.

“Joining a new club is not something you can do every year, especially one with the history of the Atlético family,” Telfer said. “I am ready to give the fans in Ottawa everything I have to win.”

Before York, Telfer made 19 appearances for Toronto FC and featured for both the York University Lions and for League1 Ontario’s Vaughan Azzurri during his youth playing days.

Telfer is the 15th player announced by Atlético Ottawa for the 2021 CPL season. He joins fellow Canadians Zach Verhoven, Jordan Webb, Dylon Powley, Chris Mannella, and Keesean Ferdinand as new signings for Atlético Ottawa.