On Sunday the New York Cosmos won the NASL Championship, defeating the Ottawa Fury 3-2. It's the team's second championship since debuting in the relaunched league, and seventh overall counting the original league incarnation. The game featured many connections to the Philadelphia Union.
Union loanee Leo Fernandes appeared in the match near the end coming on in the 93rd minute. Fernandes led the team in goals during the season with eight and was named the NASL Young Player of the Year. Now comes the question on whether or not the Union should recall the young midfielder or try to sell him to the Cosmos for a good price. With a crowded midfield, it will depend on what Head Coach Jim Curtin and new Technical Director Earnie Stewart decide on what to do with the young Brazilian. Also seeing time in the Final was Lucky Mkosana, who came on in the 83rd minute. Mkosana spent time with both Reading United and Harrisburg before joining the Cosmos.
Ottawa's connection of Ryan Richter, who played for the Union in 2011, started the match and played the full 90 minutes in the defense for the Fury.
The championship caps a banner year as well for Cosmos assistant coach Alecko Eskandarian. The former Union Assistant coach and director of its youth teams, was integral in the Cosmos first team. He was also the head coach for the team's reserve squad Cosmos B which won the NPSL title that also features former Union homegrown player Cristhian Hernandez.