Things are finally taking shape for the Cosmos as the clock ticks towards the March 25 kickoff for the 2017 NASL Spring Season. As it stands, the Cosmos roster has 18 players under contract, but rumors once again have been swirling around the club. Three trialists were present at the open practice for media, and Amauri was officially announced at the team’s press conference. The club is still expected to have 20 players signed before their preseason trip to the Dominican Republic, and Gio hinted at more signings coming soon, including the possibility of another former player.
As the month of January comes to a close, the Cosmos have taken large strides forward towards the 2017 season since Rocco B. Commisso took over the club on the 10th. The club has made 15 player signings, most of whom are familiar faces and key pieces who helped the Cosmos win back-to-back NASL Championships. The club also officially announced a move to MCU Park for the upcoming year. While all of the news has caused a sense of optimism about the club’s future, there are still some questions that will need to be answered before the ball first rolls in the Spring Season, especially due to the few attacking pieces that have signed with the team.
Cosmos celebrate their title win in PKs [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]
It’s been just over two weeks since our last speculation, but there has definitely been plenty of movement for both the Cosmos and other teams around the NASL. As it stands, the Cosmos have officially announced twelve signings, eleven of them returning Cosmos from last season’s NASL Championship squad, many of whom played a key role in the title run. Here’s what we’ve learned since last time:
With the word officially out that Rocco Commisso will now be taking the reins and injecting life back into the Cosmos, the new head man also revealed Tuesday in his first conference call that head coach and sporting director, Gio Savarese, would be back in both roles, and would likely have all say in player acquisition and playing tactics.
We’ve seen Gio be very successful in this role in the past, but with the limited timeline in front of him, Gio himself said, “we aren’t starting from zero, we’re starting from minus five.” As the club now tries desperately to secure a stadium and build a roster for the 2017 season before April 1 (and likely far before then), we take a look at some potential acquisitions for the Boys in Green.
With just a handful of games left in the Fall Season, the temperatures are falling but the race for the postseason is heating up. Week 15 saw FC Edmonton lock up the third spot (behind Indy and the Cosmos) based on their positioning in the combined standings. Save a total collapse by our boys in green over their last three matches, New York should beat out the Eddies for the Fall Season and win the combined table, which would give the Cosmos the first seed in The Championship. With Indy Eleven locking up the second seed by winning the Spring, they would then match up with Edmonton, meaning the Cosmos opponent will be determined over the final sprint. Lets break down the possibilities.
With questions around the state of the league for the short and long-term, Jordan Jacobsen took a look at alternative domestic leagues for the New York Cosmos in Part One of his two-part series. Now, he explores what options might exist for the Cosmos outside the United States.
Over the course of the fall season, there has been no shortage of controversy in the North American Soccer League.
Multiple reports of Fort Lauderdale unable to pay players on time, followed by new reports of ownership looking to sell the team, a continuous flow of soap opera drama involving Rayo OKC, and most recently a scare that Ottawa Fury was looking to join USL, save an announcement on the new Canadian Premier League (rumored to be starting in 2018), along with Tampa Bay. Minnesota is making the jump to Major League Soccer, and expansion beyond San Francisco Deltas remains a mystery. At the same time, the Deltas told The Telegraph that they still back the league with firm confidence, and Commissioner Bill Peterson mentioned being in talks with with four potential ownership groups based in the US and the Middle East.
With the league being surrounded by uncertainty, and news about the future causing severe whiplash depending on what day of the week it is, one has to wonder what the future would look like for our boys in green if the NASL were to cease operation.
When considering potential options, three things were considered. How would this move affect the club long term? How would it affect the potential stadium? And how would it affect the Cosmos ability to become the best American soccer club?