ATLANTA - An old yet familiar cry was heard around the soccer world Saturday night. The Cosmos are champions of the North American Soccer League -- again.
The Cosmos capped a memorable and remarkable return to soccer, winning Soccer Bowl with a 1-0 victory over the Atlanta Silverbacks in the NASL championship game.
Former Spanish international Marcos Senna connected for the lone goal in the 50th minute as the Cosmos walked out of Silverbacks Park with their sixth NASL championship trophy and first since they last won Soccer Bowl in 1982. In that game, the late Giorgio Chinaglia scored in a 1-0 triumph over the Seattle Sounders and Brazilian great Carlos Alberto spearheaded the defense.
Those legends have been replaced by a younger generation of players who might not have the same reputation but have a similar desire to win. They turned the NASL upside down in the club's first season of competitive soccer since 1984. The Cosmos lost only once in 15 games (10-1-4) while securing the NASL fall season crown to meet the spring season winners, Atlanta, in the final.
"I am very proud of the guys," coach Giovanni Savarese said. "It was well deserved, this championship. They've done great throughout the season. They've worked very hard. It paid off today. For them against all odds, they did an amazing job."