Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams held a soccer ball “kick around” and extended a special Brooklyn welcome to New York Cosmos head coach Giovanni Savarese, assistant coach Alecko Eskandarian, New York Cosmos players Raul Gonzalez and Long Island native Carlos Mendes and Joe Barone, chairman of the National Premier Soccer League, in advance of their upcoming first game in Brooklyn against the Ottawa Fury May 2 at 7 p.m. at MCU Park in Coney Island, home of the Brooklyn Cyclones, at a press conference at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 5.

“This is great for Brooklyn—to use MCU Park to play the game of soccer for the first time. Soccer has grown so much in Brooklyn. On any given Saturday, you can go to any neighborhood park and see our young people engaging in the sport. There’s an international appeal in the borough of Brooklyn; 47 percent of Brooklynites speak a language other than English at home. No other sport personifies this diversity and energy more than soccer,” said Adams.

“Soccer has grown tremendously in Brooklyn since I’ve been here. It’s been a privilege to see it happen,” said Barone.

“I grew up and played soccer not too far from here. We’re very excited to be in Brooklyn and play at MCU Park,” said Savarese. “I’m enjoying my time here in New York with the Cosmos. Hopefully we continue to have success on the field in Brooklyn and later on, so we can win a championship.”