The NY Cosmos finished off what was a sensational return season to the NASL after a 30 year absence. With their 1-0 victory on Saturday night against their Soccer Bowl opponent the Atlanta Silverbacks, the Cosmos ended the season 9-4-1 while accumulating 31 points to easily take the top spot in the Fall NASL season. The victory put them 8 full points against the second place team, the Carolina Railhawks.
With the regular season now behind them, all the NY Cosmos have left is to set their sights on Atlanta one more time and this time play for the NASL overall championship. The Cosmos have been in command of the NASL table now for a few weeks. They have gone 11 games in a row without losing a match which presents an ominous task ahead for Atlanta.
The team is expected to come with the same cast of characters that has gotten them to the top of the table. Led by veteran Marcos Senna who has been a master at distributing the ball at midfield his intended targets are sure to be ready to attack the net. However one thing that needs to be remembered is how Silverbacks goalie Joe Nasco virtually shutdown the Cosmos in their first match back on September 8th. This past Saturday, Nasco was not in goal for the Silverbacks as both teams refused to show their hand to the other team and sent out reserves. Can the Cosmos solve Joe Nasco this time around?
The defense for the Cosmos will be the ultimate deciding factor in this game. The Cosmos have bragging rights this fall as being the stingiest defense in the league as they only allowed 12 goals the entire season in 14 matches. Seven of those matches resulted in the Cosmos goalie picking up a clean sheet. That’s half the matches for the Cosmos. The defense has been led by the powerful defensive trio of Carlos Mendes, Hunter Freeman and Roversio who have kept the opposition off balance and inept at penetrating the box in front of goalie Kyle Reynish.
The table seems to be set for the Cosmos. They have been without question, the masters of the Fall NASL season. But its time to step up and challenge for the title. Can they play 90 more minutes of beautiful soccer as a cohesive unit? Can they remain calm and focused as coach Giovanni Savarese has asked of them all season? Can they win the Soccer Bowl?
That is what ultimately makes champion teams great. The Cosmos as a club have done it five times before. Can the names Senna, Diaz, Ayoze, Freeman, Mendes and Reynish stamp their names as “Cosmos Champions” along side the likes of Pele, Chinaglia, Beckenbauer, Messing and Alberto? The team was rebooted for one reason only and it was to do just that. Can they take that final step to get there?
Off to Atlanta to find out Cosmos Fans!