Pele to appear at inaugural New York Cosmos match

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It’s still impossible to know how the new day New York Cosmos will impact the soccer market? Significant influence, adding prestige to domestic soccer’s second tier? Or lesser influential entity precisely because the organization does wear the look and feel of a bigger fish in a smaller pond?

Either way, credit the team for doing everything it can to make the biggest possible splash.

Today comes news that the Cosmos’ inaugural match will also be a time to honor the former club’s biggest names. Attending the team’s opening match on Aug. 3 at Hofstra University’s Shuart Stadium will be none other than Pele (still generally regarded as the game’s greatest great) and fellow Brazilian legend Carlos Alberto, along with family members of the late Giorgio Chinaglia.

All were star attractions during the Cosmos salad days in the North American Soccer League in the 1970s and 80s.

“We can never forget the great memories of playing for the Cosmos,” said Pele in a release from the team. He is the club’s Honorary President. “It’s good to have the team back, and to involve my friend and captain Carlos Alberto along with the family of Giorgio Chinaglia.”

Pele is also scheduled to appear in an Aug. 1 lighting ceremony at the Empire State Building.