By Michael Lewis
Regardless how they fare for the rest of the National Premier Soccer League playoffs, the Cosmos will continue onto a new league next month, although it won’t be the one they were slated in which to compete.
Exit the NPSL Founders Cup and enter the NPSL Members Cup, it was announced Wednesday afternoon.
The new competition will be a six-team league running from August through October with the teams playing in one division rather than 11 over two divisions. There will be no playoffs.
The Members Cup will be governed by United States Adult Soccer Association and brought into the NPSL corporate structure and managed by NPSL staff with league members.
The Founders Cup was supposed to have 11 teams.
The East Region was to include Chattanooga FC, Detroit City FC, Miami FC, Miami United FC, Milwaukee Torrent and Cosmos.
The West Region was to have ASC San Diego, Cal FC, Napa Valley 1839 FC, FC Arizona and Oakland Roots.
According to U.S. soccer sources, the Members Cup teams are negotiating to play some fall friendlies against clubs from the National Independent Soccer Association, which is scheduled to begin competition Sept. 7.
Perhaps that could lead to negotiations for the two leagues to merge for 2020 and beyond.
The Cosmos still will kick off their new venture at Chattanooga FC at Finley Stadium Aug. 10. Their home opener is still against Milwaukee at Mitchel Athletic Complex in Uniondale, N.Y. Aug. 17.
All home games will be played at 7 p.m. at that venue.
“We’re very excited to launch the Members Cup,” Cosmos senior vice president Joe Barone said. “It’s an important step to developing a full season, independent league where the New York Cosmos can grow and thrive.”
Added Cosmos coach Carlos Mendes: “We are expecting a high level of competition in the Members Cup, and we are so thankful for [owner] Rocco Commisso’s commitment to the club and this new exciting league.”
The Cosmos will host ASC San Diego in an NPSL semifinal match at Mitchel Saturday at 7 p.m.
|Aug. 10||7:30 p.m.||Finley Stadium||Chattanooga FC||New York Cosmos|
|Aug. 17||7 p.m.||Mitchel Athletic Complex||New York Cosmos||Milwaukee Torrent|
|Aug. 31||7 p.m.||Ultimate Soccer Arena||Michigan Stars||New York Cosmos|
|Sept. 7||7 p.m.||Mitchel Athletic Complex||New York Cosmos||Napa Valley1839 FC|
|Sept. 14||7 p.m.||Mitchel Athletic Complex||Michigan Stars||New York Cosmos|
|Sept. 21||7:30 p.m.||Keyworth Stadium||Detroit City FC||New York Cosmos|
|Sept. 28||7 p.m.||Mitchel Athletic Complex||New York Cosmos||Chattanooga FC|
|Oct. 5||7 p.m.||Hart Park||Milwaukee Torrent||New York Cosmos|
|Oct. 12||7 p.m.||Mitchel Athletic Complex||New York Cosmos||Detroit City FC|
|Oct. 19||7 p.m.||Dodd Stadium||Napa Valley 1839 FC||New York Cosmos|