February 27, 2013
NOT EXPANSION MINDED
Garber: Cosmos not actively seeking to become an MLS expansion team
By Michael Lewis
The New York Cosmos are not actively seeking to become the owner of the proposed Major League Soccer expansion team in New York City, says commissioner Don Garber.
During his state-of-the-league press conference in Manhattan on Wednesday night, Garber addressed the Cosmos issue.
"I have not had active questions on that recently [from the Cosmos]," he said.
MLS wants to place an expansion team -- the league's 20th club -- in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Flushing, Queens by 2016.
When asked about the Cosmos' status, Garber replied, "That's a question for them," he said. "You can call Bill Peterson, their commissioner. You can call Seamus O'Brien or Erik Stover."
O'Brien is the Cosmos chairman, Stover the North American Soccer League team's COO.
Garber said he sat at a nearby table to the Cosmos contingent at the recent New York City Soccer Gala in Manhattan.
"I am friendly with both Seamus and his partners and with Erik, with whom I have a lot of respect for," he said. "I will continue to speak with them and I'll speak with them on a regular basis. They had a choice to make: Do they want to vie for a New York City MLS team or do they want to go into the second division? They decided to go into the Second Division. We support that and continue to support the NASL and the USL."
Garber said he was the chairman of the professional council at U.S. Soccer.
"My job is not just to run Major League Soccer, but to make professional soccer more viable in America," Garber said. "We need the NASL to be successful to do so."
The Cosmos will kick off their second tenure in the NASL during the league's fall season Aug. 3. They will play at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y.