Former Red Bulls boss Stover hired to run Cosmos

Photo by ISIPhotos.com


The New York Cosmos have clear aspirations for a future in Major League Soccer, and have turned to a man with MLS experience to lead the club.

The Cosmos have named former New York Red Bulls managing director Erik Stover as the team’s new Chief Operating Officer. He will over see all facets of the club, both on the field and off the field.

“I’m excited to be part of the rebirth of the New York Cosmos,” Stover said in a team-issued release. “Seamus O’Brien and the rest of the board have a vision to build a proper soccer club in New York. We have a great legacy to live up to and I’m eager to get started right away.”

Stover enjoyed an impressive stint as Red Bulls managing director, overseeing the construction of Red Bull Arena. He was also in charge when the team made a run to the 2008 MLS Cup Final.

“With his knowledge of the local community, combined with a deep experience in soccer, stadium management and the sports and entertainment industry, Erik has the perfect credentials to lead the management of the Cosmos franchise,” said Cosmos Chairman Seamus O’Brien in a team-issued release. “We are delighted to have him on board and look forward to working with him day to day as we retrace our journey back to the top of soccer in North America”

Stover was with the Red Bulls from May 2008 to April of 2011, before being part of a front-office purge driven by former Red Bulls general manager Erik Soler, who replaced Stover with Chris Heck, who lasted only a year with the team.

My take on the hire? When Stover took over as managing director of the Red Bulls, he took over with minimal soccer experience, and yes, at the time I bashed New York for hiring him for that reason.  He didn’t let that stop him from learning on the job and becoming a strong managing director for the club. Though he is still better at off-the-field matters, he has also proven to be smart enough to find the right people to help him with areas where he isn’t as proficient. In short, he is the perfect hire for a club looking to join MLS, and build a soccer stadium in New York.

What do you think of this development?

Share your thoughts below.


  • Josh D

    This hire is far better than the soccer celebrities they intially hired a couple years ago. Stover will settle the club and build a foundation. That’s what this club needs to develop into a proper MLS club.

    And I for one am excited to see another team developing nicely. Having a team in Queens would be immense. Anyone who has spent a weekend there knows with the proper organization and with proper signings, it could easily sell out a 30,000 seater stadium.

    As a DC fan, I wish them nothing but the best. It’s good for the league, the conference, and soccer in general. They just better not build a stadium before us…


  • MMV

    Not a bad choice. It seems to me, from afar, that RBNY front office, has been more of a cluster**** since Stover was axed. Am I correct? or is that wishful thinking? Nonetheless, he built his resume with RBNY and with little backbone yet still performed decently. This time around for the Cosmos, they seem to be putting their ducks in a row slowly but surely instead of hoping on and throwing everyone of their bandwagon. There is less of an abrasive, arrogant tone which probably is attributed to this new owenerhsip.


    • Chris

      My impression was that Stover had a very good understanding of the soccer community and the fanbase around Red Bull. Not sure why Red Bull fired him (especially since Chris Heck was a DISASTER), but then again nothing this team does is right.


  • Eugene

    He’s a stadium management/construction guy… so where’s the stadium? Clearly the club is anticipating something they haven’t publicized.


    • fischy

      Umm…perhaps you’re not paying attention. The league has already publicized a proposal to build one in Flushing Corona Park. Waiting approval — and waiting to decide who will get the franchise. Obviously, this is the Cosmos opening bid to re0establish credibility.


  • ed houston

    i was really not a fan of the cosmos and/or another MLS team in NY. however, i am starting to like the idea of a team and stadium in queens -only because i lived in queens and been to flushing meadows many times. so, we will see how it goes.


  • Sergio

    …and in other NASL news, Atlanta Sillygorillas fans vote to keep ridiculous team name. (Sigh.)


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