The NASL is slowly starting to crumble...
Its the sad truth, whether fans want to admit or not.
Teams are slowly fading away in a league that once was. It started with North Carolina FC as they joined the USL. The club’s owner is noted for thinking of the future of NCFC as they think of joining the MLS one day.
The 2017 NASL Champion San Francisco Deltas were rumored of folding a couple of weeks ago. That rumor came to reality as the club vanished from the league.
Edmonton FC joined the Deltas in the escape the same day. Some sources note their lack of attendance and funding was a big problem. The Eddies are also big candidates to join the Canadian Premier League, if that ever evolves.
The departures now leave the NASL with seven clubs. Both California United and 1904 FC are expected to join the fray next season. Though, it seems that Cal United could still be undecided on their future.
Among those seven lonely clubs are the historic and beloved New York Cosmos.
Ever since dropping the Soccer Bowl this past season, the Cosmos have been very silent. The club’s most recent news would be the recap of that game.
New York has also been silent transfer wise as well. It was reported a couple of weeks ago that Cosmos’ scout Luke Sassano was very impressed with a pair of young midfielders - Maxwell Takyi and Felix Asamoah - from Ghanaian side, Republicans FC. But, it’s looking like the news was mere speculation as no other reports have emerged since that time period.
Fans have been hearing the crickets chirping from the Cosmos as of late, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t taking a stance on the USSF decision from earlier this month.
Owner Rocco Commisso has been very active in trying to save both the club and the NASL. Commisso has taken a leadership role in the fight against the ruling, which is heartwarming for Cosmos’ fans to see.
Commisso gave his thanks on Thanksgiving by announcing that he will pay the club’s salaries through December 31st.
New York politicians Eric Adams and Chuck Schumer have also joined the fight to preserve the historic club.
But the questions still remains; is it still enough to save the Cosmos?
The pace of clubs leaving the NASL at the moment suggest league play is very unlikely next season. If the team count stays at seven, an enormous amount of restructuring the way the NASL operates will have to get done (standings, playoffs, etc.). There’s no indication yet as to progress being done for that.
If New York was to leave the NASL, where would they go?
The MLS seems like pure fantasy. The league is trying to expand at a rapid velocity, plus there’s already two teams in the New York/New Jersey area.
The United Soccer League is another option. The Cosmos would face some different competition as a lot of MLS development squads feature in the league. New York, of course, would also get another year of playing time in through joining the league.
United States soccer as a whole is a big mess at the moment. The national team is in shambles, the NASL is crumbling and teams are then left in a serious scenario to save their respective franchise. The problems range all the way from the top with the MLS to the very bottom. The Columbus Crew have spread the #SaveTheCrew hashtag around very effectively. The club is also doing well in the playoffs.
It’d be very surprising if something didn’t happen to the Cosmos in the next month or two. The club has some very serious decisions to make, leaving fans wondering about the status of their favorite club.
Regardless of what happens, it’s best to focus on right now. New York is still apart of the NASL and they won’t go down without a fight.
This means that regular news should still be reported and the club should still focus on what’s best for New York. Again, we don’t know what’s going to happen.
Enjoy the club right now and hope for the best. Fans know the Cosmos aren’t going to give up, and we all shouldn’t either. Support the Cosmos, fight with the Cosmos, and forever love the New York Cosmos.