Ozzie Ramos’ professional soccer journey has taken him to Mexico.
The 2014 Central Valley High School grad flew from Sacramento to Guadalajara on Sunday to begin the next chapter of his playing career as a member of Atlético Jalisco.
“I’m excited for the new adventure,” said Ramos, a center midfielder.
Ramos, 23, will suit up for Atlético Jalisco’s first-division team in Mexico’s new Liga de Balompié.
The club was founded in July.
The 2020 season will get underway in October.
“I’m going to fit right in,” Ramos said. “I’ll do my part to convince the coaching staff I should be an important player for the club.”
Ramos had a successful tryout with Atlético Jalisco in July.
“I went to Mexico for two weeks,” he said. “I trained there. I guess I caught their eye. We talked and came to an agreement. I’ll be out there for a whole year. It will be a different style of living and playing. I’m excited. I’m fluent in Spanish. Mexico is my parents’ home country.”
Ramos previously suited up for San Diego 1904 FC of the National Independent Soccer Association.
He was supposed to play for 1904 FC this fall but the third-division pro league club canceled its season due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I’m not happy it had to end this way,” Ramos said. “But 1904 FC isn’t the only club that will not participate in the fall season. It was a smart move for them to not play.”
“San Diego gave me a platform to perform on the field,” he added. “The pressure to perform day in and day out and wins games, I enjoyed it. I pride myself in being a technical player. I hope to continue taking steps forward.”
Ramos and San Diego had their spring campaign cut short because of COVID-19.
Ramos, a second-year team captain, scored one goal in two games.
Ramos signed a contract with 1904 FC last August.
He attended a month-long training camp at Southwestern College in Chula Vista prior to earning a roster spot.
A total of 30 players participated.
San Diego posted a 2-0-4 record during the 2019 fall season.
Ramos played for ASC San Diego, an amateur team, in the National Premier Soccer League prior to suiting up for 1904 FC. He filled a major role in leading the amateur team to a 15-6-1 overall record, the West Region title and semifinal appearance in the NPSL Playoffs for the first time.
Ramos collected five goals and four assists while starting at defensive center midfielder.
Ramos spent his first two years of college at San Diego State. He saw action in all 38 of the Aztecs’ games.
He collected two goals, dished out one assist and attempted 39 shots while starting 31 times.
Ramos was voted San Diego State’s top newcomer his freshman year.
Ramos totaled seven assists and one goal during his two-year career with the Seattle University men’s soccer team.
He helped the Redhawks secure a berth to the NCAA Division-I Tournament in 2017. Ramos earned Western Athletic Conference honorable-mention accolades.
Ramos graduated from Central Valley High School in 2014.
He tied for first in California in assists (29) and ranked fifth in goals (31) during his final season with the Hawks. He also claimed the WAC Most Valuable Player award for the second year in a row.
Central Valley posted a program-best 26-2-0 overall record, captured their sixth straight conference title and advanced to the playoffs for the seventh consecutive year.
“It’s been pretty rocky,” Ramos said while talking about his soccer journey. “It’s not for everyone. There’s a lot that goes into it (being a pro athlete). It looks easy in the movies. You have to be really focused and know what you want. You have to have confidence in yourself. I do because of my preparation. You have to be really mentally strong. If you doubt yourself too much, you’re going to push yourself out of the game.”