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Pgh Soccer History series: Cosmos Busters!

Who Ya’ Gonna Call? Cosmos Busters!

Ok, it doesn’t have quite the same ring as the original but on January 18, 1985 it seemed fitting enough.

On this particular Friday night the New York Cosmos were in Pittsburgh to take on the Pittsburgh Spirit. This game is very near and dear to me. I grew up a huge fan of both teams. This was my chance to see the World Famous New York Cosmos in person.

Now back then it wasn’t unusual to hear the Ray Parker Jr. mega hit “Ghost Busters” at MISL games. I decided to capitalize on the success of the Ghost Busters movie and create a banner that read “Cosmos Busters!”

It seemed so perfect considering the Cosmos logo was circular and all I had to do was put a red line through it. Simplicity at it’s finest.

A WORK OF ART! I hung the sign over one of the balconies.

My love for the New York Cosmos originates from the lack of regional exposure Soccer was getting back in the early to mid 80’s. Other than Pittsburgh Spirit broadcasts, I was left with WOR Channel 9/NY Cosmos games.

I have been looking for some footage of this game for years. I most recently found it in a box of old VHS tapes provided by John Kowalski. When I discovered the tape, I couldn’t believe it. I just stared at the white label down it’s spine that read “Pittsburgh Spirit vs New York Cosmos, Fri 1/18/85” in awe.

There was some buildup that Giorgio Chinaglia was going to make an appearance at the game. He had come out of retirement to stimulate interest however that didn’t happen.


For those who didn’t know any better, you could mistake Angelo DiBernardo for Giorgio Chinaglia on appearance. The Cosmos had recently made a coaching change from Eddie Firmani to Ray Klivecka. Ray Klivecka had previous ties to the Cosmos along with some indoor coaching experience with the Buffalo Stallions.

This would be the second meeting between the two teams during the 84-85 campaign.

The first meeting took place on 12/16/84 in East Rutherford, NJ and consisted of seven lead changes with the Spirit leaving victorious due to David Hoggan OT goal. Cosmos legend Shep Messing was ironically the Pittsburgh goalie and David Brcic, who would soon to be a member of the Pittsburgh Spirit, was the net-minder for the Cosmos.

Unfortunately there would be no more games between both franchises following. The New York Cosmos would cease indoor operations during the 84-85 season citing financial issues.


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