Cosmos' Midfield Stalwart Danny Szetela Should Be At His Best In Third Season In New York

After two seasons with the New York Cosmos, Danny Szetela believes 2015 wll bring his best since a knee injury nearly ended his career
Apr 1, 2015

By Matthew Levine

New York Cosmos midfielder Danny Szetela was one of a slew of promising young players coming through the United States pipeline. He featured at the Under-17 and U-20 FIFA World Cups for the U.S. Youth National Team.

He earned three appearances with the senior side as well.

However, any chance to fulfill his potential over the course of his career, or to have any career at all, was nearly derailed by injuries. It took three knee operations and three years before Szetela was able to get back in the game.

In came the Cosmos, who took a chance on the midfielder, signing Szetela after he logged minutes for New Jersey amateur side Icon FC.

“At the time when I got here, I didn’t expect to play that much,” he told

“Fortunately I got the opportunity to play the first season and consistently start. It’s important to be able to play to keep confidence.”

Over the past two seasons, the now 27-year-old developed into one of the most consistent and sturdy performers on the team sheet. Playing alongside Marcos Senna in the middle of midfield, he helped the club win a championship in their reboot season.

While it proved to be a bit of a disappointing campaign for the Cosmos in 2014, Szetela again was ever-present and improving all the time.

Entering his third season in the North American Soccer League, Szetela is even closer to the ability that put him on the path as a young American to watch.

"I think I’m getting back to where I’ve been. Three years out is a long time, but I’ve had two seasons to play. This could be the year where I feel I get to 100 percent,” he said.

Even more competition in a stacked Cosmos' midfield should push Szetela even more.

“The good thing is it will keep things competitive. Guys will need to come in and be consistent to stay on the field,” he said.

“It’s another step for me, so I can continue to develop.”

The main thing for him now is to continue to stay healthy. Despite being out of the game for such an extended period, to this point, Szetela has avoided niggling injuries.

Much of that has to do with the work he continues to put in off the pitch to keep the muscles, particularly around his right knee, strengthened.

“Working on all the little things off the field and with the strength coach during the week either before or after practice. I have to make sure I keep strengthening the muscles around the knee,” he said.

Tending to do the dirty work in the midfield – winning the ball and distributing to teammates – the work he has done doesn’t always show up in the box score. 

The midfielder, however, is hoping to provide an even bigger impact on games by finding the back of the net on a more regular basis after tallying three times in 2014.

There is one other quality he is hoping to add – and he can certainly attest to not taking the game for granted.

“Leadership,” he said.

And with more confidence while rounding into his best form in years, Szetela is in a prime position to help lead the Cosmos, and possibly, to another title in 2015. 

Our Terms and Conditions of Use have changed. By using this Site, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Use. Agree and Dismiss
Our Privacy Policy has changed. By using this Site, you agree to the Privacy Policy. Agree and Dismiss