“Our roof is very, very high”: Alberto Gallego discusses move to Cosmos, coaching, Valencia friendly

Alberto Gallego [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

One of the bigger changes to the Cosmos in 2017 was undoubtedly the staff joining Gio Savarese on the bench. Alecko Eskandarian and Carlos Llamosa had both patrolled the sidelines since 2013, helping Savarese grow and nurture the famous “Cosmos Culture”. With both moving on to MLS (Llamosa to New England, Eskandarian with the MLS player relationship office), the club needed a new face to assist Savarese in a new task: rebuilding the club from near scratch.

Enter Alberto Gallego, a bold Spaniard who brings a track record of success in lower division domestic football in his home country. Continue reading

“I didn’t like the situation in Granada…here we are content and happy” - Javi Marquez on the Cosmos

Javi Marquez [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

It’s arguable that Javi Marquez had a slow start to the year and struggled to make an impact in his first appearances as a Cosmos. While he initially seemed to vanish at the start of the season, his weight has been felt in his last few matches, both in overall chemistry with his teammates and in the two goals he scored in his last three games.

The midfielder came to New York looking for a new start after spending his entire career in the Spanish system, becoming yet another former Liga player to join the NASL club alongside names like Marcos Senna, Raul and Ayoze.

And New York certainly seems to agree with him. Continue reading

“It’s been an interesting beginning from December to now” - Gio Savarese on injuries, schedule congestion

Giovanni Savarese [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

Adversity has been no stranger to the Cosmos in 2017. Rebuilding a team that had disbanded and a short preseason to ready themselves have given way to a suddenly congested schedule and a wave of injuries to contend with.

With an NASL match, Open Cup match and a high-profile friendly in Saudi Arabia all happening in the space of a week, TICC spoke with Cosmos Head Coach Giovanni Savarese on the challenges that lay ahead for the club. Continue reading

Carlos Mendes on the club’s performance, his return to play

[l-r] Carlos Mendes and Kalif Alhassan [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

Carlos Mendes recently made his return to the field, subbing on during the Cosmos’ 1-1 draw in Jacksonville last weekend. Absent after the season opener in Puerto Rico, the captain put in over a half hour of play on the road.

TICC caught up with the captain to ask him his thoughts on the season so far and his recovery. Continue reading

Finding Rocco: Jack Gaeta talks Gio, Cosmos, finding a savior

[l-r] Jack Gaeta, Alberto Gallego, Giovanni Savarese [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

By now, all of Cosmos Country knows the savior of their club by name: Rocco Commisso. Coming in as the club quietly died in the shadows, the Mediacom owner saved the team, moved it to Brooklyn and granted it at least another year of life.

But, what hasn’t been widely known is how Commisso got involved with this club after previously passing up opportunities in MLS and abroad.

That, as it turns out, is because of one man’s refusal to give up on the survival of the New York Cosmos.  Continue reading

Cosmos midfield coming together, “getting better and better every game”

Danny Szetela [Photo: San Francisco Deltas]

There’s no question that in this bonus season, the New York Cosmos got off to a rocky start. Unable to log a shot in their first two matches and blown out in their home opener, their fortunes have slowly begun to change. An 0-1-1 start has given way to a three-game unbeaten streak where they’ve permitted only one goal.

That goal came from league leaders Jacksonville Armada, this week’s opponents. A final result of 1-1 indicates the tough battle that could lie ahead for the team.

However, despite the challenges that have befallen the back line and striker options, the midfield continues to develop and improve as the players themselves have noted. Continue reading

“It was a big honor for me to wear it for this historic club” - Danny Szetela on captain’s band

Danny Szetela in action against the Deltas [Photo: Danny Szetela’s Instagram]

The Cosmos recently celebrated their second win on the road, holding onto a 1-0 lead over the San Francisco Deltas behind a shutout effort from Jimmy Maurer and a beautifully chipped goal from Emmanuel Ledesma.

However, with the absences of Carlos Mendes and Ayoze from the 18, the green and white had a new option wearing the captain’s armband that evening: Danny Szetela. Continue reading

Spanish legend Raul reflects on time with Cosmos, new challenges with La Liga

La Liga rooftop event [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

On Sunday, the two titans of La Liga Santander, Real Madrid and Barcelona, squared off for another running of El Clasico, a match whose importance was amplified by its proximity to the end of the season, and the possibility of seeing the top spot change hands.

La Liga also hosted an event in Manhattan attended by members of the New York soccer community and former members of the two clubs playing. Of the latter, one of those in attendance was Raul, eterno capitán of Real Madrid and a member of the New York Cosmos in 2015.  Continue reading

MLS veteran Darrius Barnes adjusting well to life in New York

Darrius Barnes [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

The Cosmos, like many NASL clubs, have a history of signing players who have found success in Major League Soccer. In fact, the Cosmos back line, the unit that has most stayed intact since 2013, has seen the likes of Carlos Mendes and Hunter Freeman come from MLS and become stalwarts for the green and white. While this past offseason has changed a lot for the Cosmos, new signing Darrius Barnes has become a part of the continued Cosmos tradition of acquiring veteran MLS defenders. Continue reading

“I’m very, very happy to be back” - Ryan Richter talks off-season, turf, and 2017 expectations

Ryan Richter [Photo: Steve Hamlin/TICC]

“Ryan Richter is currently a right back for the New York Cosmos…or formerly a right back for the New York Cosmos…or who knows what’s going on with the Cosmos these days.”

The day is December 1st, and this is the introduction The Play Podcast host Bobby Warshaw gives the Cosmos right back. The episode is a beautiful analysis of a goal by Chelsea star winger Pedro, but a roughly two-minute conversation at the beginning of the recording serves as an indicator of the type of offseason the Philadelphia native was having. Continue reading