The US soccer team New York Cosmos will arrive in Cuba on Sunday to play friendly games with the Cuban team at Havana’s Pedro Marrero Stadium on Thursday. Accompanying the New York club is Edson Arantes Dos Nascimento “Pele, the King of Football”, who will visit Cuba for the first time.
Cosmos will be the first professional soccer team from the United States to play in Cuba since 1978, although that country’s national team played a qualifier for the World Cup in Havana in 2008.
Among the players of the US are Spanish forward Raul Gonzalez Blanco, who had a successful career with the Spanish professional club Real Madrid, and Brazilian player Marco Senna.
Precisely, Raul Gonzalez said that he was excited about the possibility of visiting Cuba and described the game as “historic” in a video broadcast in English by the American team.
“There are many fans of football and Real Madrid in Cuba, it is an amazing country and I’m excited. It will be a small party in football’s history,” said Raul Gonzalez.
He said that he hoped that other teams (from the United States) can play against Cuban teams.
Founded in 1970 and registered in the North American Soccer League (NASL), the Cosmos made history from 1975 to 1984, when it invested large sums of money to hire world stars in their final year’s of their careers, including Pele, German player Franz Beckenbauer and Dutch player Johan Neeskens.
According to the program of the Cuban Soccer Federation, New York Cosmos will have a training session on Monday at the Pedro Marrero Stadium and, in the afternoon, it will give a press conference at the Melia Cohiba Hotel.
On Tuesday afternoon, Cosmos will play against Cuba’s national team.