NEW YORK -- The North American Soccer League announced on Thursday that the New York Cosmos have joined the league and will begin league play in the 2013 season. The NASL Board of Governors unanimously approved the Cosmos’ membership during its meetings this week.
It has been nearly 30 years since the Cosmos have played in a professional league, last performing in the original NASL in 1984.
It was not immediately known whether the club's NASL presence will open up possibilities of playing in Major League Soccer, which is gung-ho on adding a 20th franchise, an expansion team in New York City. The league is hopeful of building a new stadium in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in Queens.
The 21st century version of the NASL is a second-tier pro league behind MLS.
The current NASL lineup: Atlanta Silverbacks, Carolina RailHawks, FC Edmonton, Fort Lauderdale Strikers, New York Cosmos, Minnesota Stars FC, Puerto Rico Islanders, San Antonio Scorpions FC and Tampa Bay Rowdies. Ottawa will begin play in 2014.
The Cosmos' ownership group, New York Cosmos LLC, is an international partnership led by industry veteran Seamus O’Brien. The team said that it is committed to putting the brand back at the forefront of North American soccer.
The Cosmos began play in 1971, spending 14 seasons in the original NASL, winning five Soccer Bowl titles and bringing some of the biggest names in world soccer history to North America. Full story from Big Apple Soccer