NASL Championship Final Prepares for Kickoff
The NASL Championship is two days from kickoff as the New York Cosmos and Indy Eleven gear up for an exciting soccer night at Belson Stadium on Sunday. The Cosmos reach the final for the second consecutive season, while Indy Eleven reach the title match for the first time in club history.
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NASL Soccer News: The 2016 North American Soccer League (NASL) title match will be held this weekend as the league’s top two sides will compete for the Soccer Bowl Trophy in The Championship Final.
The New York Cosmos, who were crowned champions of the Fall Season and earned the No. 1 seed in The Championship, will take on Indy Eleven, who won the Spring Season after an unbeaten run, at Belson Stadium on Sunday, November 13th. The Cosmos enter the match as the defending champion.
New York reached The Championship Final after a come-from-behind win on November 5th against Rayo OKC, 2-1. Venezuelan star Juan Arango, who earned 2016 NASL Golden Ball honors, rose to the occasion once more for the Cosmos, scoring a goal and assisting another in the final 20 minutes of play. Arango headed into the playoffs with 15 goals and seven assists on the season. Yohandry Orozco’s shot from inside the 18-yard box took a deflection off the post and into the net for the match-winner in the 90th minute against Rayo OKC.
In the other semifinal, Indy Eleven knocked off FC Edmonton, 1-0, at Carroll Stadium – also on November 5th – with Sinisa Ubiparipovic’s scoring his first goal for the club. With NASL Coach of the Year Tim Hankinson at the helm, Indy will now play in its first title match. The side is led by Eamon Zayed, who recorded 15 goals and six assists before the start of The Championship.
The Cosmos enter the matchup on Sunday with a 22-game home unbeaten streak, including playoffs, dating back to October 4th, 2015. The Cosmos also edged Indy, 3-0, in the last meeting between the two sides in New York.
The Eleven, though, head into Sunday with plenty of confidence and have had success against the Cosmos this season. Zayed notched two goals in the closing moments of a 2-1 victory in the Spring Season that was instrumental in the Eleven claiming the Spring Season title. After the 3-0 loss in New York, the Boys in Blue recorded the same scoreline in the last match between the top postseason seeds.
Sunday’s kickoff is at 7 p.m. ET and will be available live on CBS Network.
Photo Credit: North American Soccer League