Cosmos Extend Furloughs, NASL Update Likely After USSF Meeting

IMAGE, ANTHONY J. MERCED FOR EMPIRE OF SOCCER

by JAKE NUTTING

Uncertainty over the future of their jobs will bleed further into the holiday season for staff members of the New York Cosmos.

EoS has learned that the team informed employees at a meeting Friday morning that the furloughs that were first meant to last just one week have been extended for another week as ownership continues to mull an ultimate decision on what to do in 2017.

Cosmos CEO Seamus O’Brien stated to the media on Monday that the team was holding off on any decisions until after the North American Soccer League’s Board of Governors meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday. However, sources now tell EoS that the Cosmos are now unlikely to make any decision regarding next year decision until after the U.S. Soccer Federation’s board meeting on Tuesday in New York.

On the table for USSF’s meeting is the United Soccer League’s application for Division II. USSF President Sunil Gulati attended the NASL Board of Governors this week with executives from the USL to help mediate between the two feuding leagues.

The path the NASL takes in 2017 is also likely dependent on what happens at the USSF’s meeting. Sources tell EoS that NASL front office members were told everything is operating as “status quo” for the moment. However, a drop from Division II to the third-tier of the league system is reportedly a possibility going forward.

A core group of owners are committed to continuing their cause next year as they seek to re-fortify the league with new expansion groups and investors, while some are leaning toward jumping to the USL like the Tampa Bay Rowdies and Ottawa Fury FC.