By the Numbers: A Record-Smashing Season
Why the Cosmos’ 2016 NASL campaign was their best since the reboot.
- By defeating Indy Eleven in The Championship Final, the Cosmos became the first back-to-back NASL champions of the Modern Era and only the second in league history, joining the 1977-78 Cosmos. It is also the team’s third Soccer Bowl Trophy in four seasons, mirroring the ’77, ’78 and ’80 Cosmos titles.
- This title is the club’s eighth overall, tying a professional U.S. club soccer record. Philadelphia German American – later renamed the Philadelphia Americans and Uhrik Truckers Soccer Club – won eight American Soccer League championships from 1934-56.
- New York finished its regular season 20-5-7 (W-D-L), accumulating an NASL Modern Era record of 65 points. Not only did the Cosmos break a modern club record with 20 wins, they also finished with their highest winning percentage (62.5) while competing in the full season format. The 2013 Cosmos won 64 percent of their NASL matches, but played only the 14-game Fall Season.
- Always tough to beat in New York, the Cosmos took their home advantage to new heights in 2016, breaking a league record by going 19 straight games without a home loss (stretching back to 2015) and equaling another with 10 consecutive home wins. At 14-2-0, it was the first full undefeated home campaign since the reboot. New York outscored opponents 37-6 at Shuart Stadium, shutting out their final five regular season foes.
- On Aug. 27, the Cosmos achieved their most goals in a match and highest margin of victory by defeating the Carolina RailHawks 6-1.
- For the first time in four years, the Cosmos led the NASL with 59 goals scored. They also converted on a league high 17 percent of their chances.
- Though they missed out on a second straight Spring Season title by the slimmest of margins, the Cosmos won their second Fall Season championship since the reboot and finished with the NASL’s best record for the second year in a row.
- The Cosmos lost only once during the back half of their regular season schedule, cementing their spot at the top of the league standings with an 11-4-1 record.
- Giovanni Savarese became just the third NASL coach in the Modern Era to tally 50 regular season wins, joining Manny Lagos and Colin Clarke. The Cosmos boss notched his 50th in comeback fashion on the road Oct. 15 against Jacksonville Armada FC, a result that also clinched the Fall Season title and No. 1 seed in The Championship.
- Juan Arango was electric for the Cosmos attack. The Venezuelan midfielder set single season records for goals (15) and assists (7) en route to becoming the first Cosmos player to receive the NASL Golden Ball, awarded to the league’s MVP. He also became the club’s top goal scorer since the reboot, surpassing another beloved midfielder, Marcos Senna. The 36-year-old playmaker was at his best when it mattered most. Arango scored four goals and added three assists in his final four regular season matches, then contributed a goal and assist in The Championship Semifinal win against Rayo OKC on Nov. 5.
- Captain Carlos Mendes and left back Ayoze each made their 100th club appearance this year, becoming the first two Modern Era players to hit that milestone.
- Jimmy Maurer set career highs for clean sheets (14) and goals against average (0.81).
- Two U.S. U-19 internationals made their pro debuts in green and white: midfielder Eric Calvillo and fullback Alexis Velela. Calvillo scored his first goal in the regular season finale, a 1-0 win Oct. 29 on the road against Minnesota United.