Rocco Commisso: “If the USSF’s decision to strip the NASL of its Division II status is not obtained by mid-October, the very existence of the NASL will be in jeopardy.” (FrontRowSoccer.com Photo)
By Michael Lewis
The North American Soccer League will get its day in court against the U.S. Soccer Federation, but not as quickly as it had hoped.
U.S. District Court Judge Margo K. Brodie has scheduled a hearing for the league’s injunction against the federation for U.S. District Court for Eastern New York Oct. 31. The NASL wanted a hearing by mid-October.
The NASL has asked for an injunction of a recent ruling by U.S. Soccer, which ruled that the league won’t retain its Division II status for 2018.
In a declaration, Cosmos owner Rocco Commisso claims the future of the NASL is in jeopardy if an injunction wasn’t issued soon.
Commisso, who also is the chairman of the North American Soccer League board of governors, had claimed that without a preliminary injunction by the United States District Court by mid-October that the league’s eight clubs risked not being able to conduct preparations for the 2018 season.
“Time is of the essence in obtaining judicial relief,” Commisso said in his declaration. “Without a preliminary injunction within one month (ie. by mid-October 2017) to prevent the USSF from revoking the NASL’s Division II sanction for the 2018 season, NASL clubs, including the Cosmos, face a serious risk of being unable to conduct necessary preparations for the 2018 season.”
That included renewing sponsorship and season-ticket holds, retaining players and securing or renewing leases of the stadiums the teams play in, Commisso stated.
“In sum, if the USSF’s decision to strip the NASL of its Division II status is not obtained by mid-October, the very existence of the NASL will be in jeopardy,” he said.
In his declaration, Commisso stated that the NASL has received letters of intention signed by six prospective teams interested in joining the league to next year. That would bring the NASL membership to 13 clubs, even if it lost one of its current teams.
Commisso added that if the league would maintain its Division II status, “I believe it will be able to be quite successful next season.”
With the Cosmos on death’s bed in January, Commisso swooped in and saved the team, becoming majority owner. The club moved its home venue from Shuart M. Stadium at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. to MCU Park in Brooklyn, N.Y.
The court is located at 225 Cadman Plaza East in Brooklyn, N.Y.
For Commisso’s entire declaration, visit: