The NASL's New York Cosmos announced today that head coach Giovanni Savarese has signed a multi-year contract extension with the team.
Savarese, 42, was originally named head coach of the Cosmos on November 19, 2012 and given the task of guiding the team during its first year back in competitive play in nearly 30 years.
A former Venezuelan international and respected youth and academy coach, Savarese had never previously served as a head coach in the professional ranks. Savarese has since led the Cosmos to a first-place 7-4-1 record through the club’s first 12 games of the NASL Fall Season and is also undefeated at home.
“What Gio has achieved as a first-year coach is exceptional,” Cosmos Chairman Seamus O’Brien said. “He’s managed to put together a cohesive squad playing good soccer in a very short amount of time. We have a vision for the team’s future and Gio has proven on the field that he’s the man who can help deliver it.”
Under Savarese, the Cosmos finished their inaugural home schedule with an unbeaten record of 5-2-0 at Hofstra University’s Jame M. Shuart Stadium. The club currently stands in first place in the NASL, riding a nine-game unbeaten streak and holding a five-point lead in the league table. With two regular-season matches remaining, a single win for the Cosmos will clinch the fall-season title and a berth in the 2013 NASL Soccer Bowl.
“It’s an honor and privilege to coach this storied club,” said Savarese. “I’ve had tremendous support from day one with our ownership group and I have the benefit of working with a great staff and group of players.”
During a standout playing career as a forward, Savarese earned 30 caps and scored 10 goals for the Venezuelan National Team. He also spent three seasons with the New York/New Jersey MetroStars, scoring a then-club record 44 career goals for the Metros. Savarese’s most prolific season as a striker came during a loan in England when he scored 14 goals for Swansea City in 2000-2001. He retired as a player in 2004.