COSMOS ENTER THE FINAL MATCH OF THE SPRING SEASON WITHOUT THREE STARTERS, PRE-GAME CEREMONY TO RETIRE AND HONOR #9 GIORGIO CHINAGLIA
Many folks do not want to give the NASL the credit that it deserves. Many have said that the league is made up of one big fish swimming in a pond of small fish. Allow me to invite those critics to Schuart Stadium on Sunday, or better yet, to Al Lang Stadium on Saturday night, where Minnesota United FC has an opportunity to clinch the 2014 Spring NASL championship with a win over the Tampa Bay Rowdies. This is the harsh reality that the New York Cosmos face. They are fully aware that they may show up to the match on Sunday with only points to play for.
“We know that its a crucial game for us, a very important game for us”, commented head coach Giovanni Savarese after the team’s workout on Friday. “We know that we are depending on Minnesota, but nevertheless, whatever happens on Saturday night, we have to come in Sunday ready to be able to play and get three points because the way that the system is in this league you need to accumulate points to give yourself a chance to be in the semifinals or in the playoffs.”
As coach Savarese alluded to, even if the Cosmos do not win the spring NASL championship, they can very easily make the post season by either winning the fall championship or being one of the top two teams in the league to finish with the most points in both seasons combined. The one thing that the Cosmos would forfeit by not winning the Spring Championship would be to host the Soccer Bowl as the winner of the spring season is given that privilege.
The Cosmos will be going into their match on Sunday without three of their starters. Coach Savarese confirmed on Friday that Marcos Senna (groin), Roversio (ankle) and Diomar Diaz (hamstring) will all be unavailable to play on Sunday against the Ottawa Fury.
If the Cosmos happen to be unable to play for the Spring title on Sunday, there will be at least one celebration still going on at Schuart Stadium. Prior to the match on Sunday, the New York Cosmos will retire Giorgio Chinaglia’s #9 jersey in a special pre-game ceremony that will be attended by several members of the Chinaglia family. Game time is 5:00pm with the special pre game ceremony expected to start at 4:45. All children under the age of 14 will receive a pair of Giorgio Chinaglia #9 wristbands.
For tickets to this Sunday’s match, click here to be taken to the NY Cosmos ticket site.
Ottawa comes to New York fresh off of a win against FC Edmonton. Anthony Donatelli and Oliver Thomal Minatel lead the Fury with four goals and three goals respectively. Ottawa has impressed in their first season by scoring 14 goals so far this season and is ranked second in the league in that category. Here is the other action around the NASL in week nine, the final week of the Spring Season:
SATURDAY – JUNE 7
7:30pm – Indy Eleven @ Atlanta Silverbacks (In Atlanta)
7:30pm – Minnesota United FC @ Tampa Bay Rowdies (In Tampa Bay)
8:30pm – Ft. Lauderdale Strikers @ San Antonio Scorpions (In San Antonio)
SUNDAY – JUNE 8
4:00PM – Carolina Railhawks @ FC Edmonton (In Edmonton)
Listen to what Joseph Nane, Jimmy Maurer and Sebastian Guenzatti had to say about playing Ottawa this Sunday.