Cosmos knock off Sounders 2-1 in ’77 Soccer Bowl III

28 Aug

Sunday, August 28, 1977

The Seattle Sounders battled the New York Cosmos exactly 35 years ago, playing a dramatic NASL Championship game – Soccer Bowl ’77 – at Civic Stadium in Portland, Ore.

The Cosmos, on a Georgio Chinaglia header late in the game, beat Seattle 2-1.

“God is so nice to me,” said Pele, “I came to America to make soccer big, I did that – and I won the championship, too.”

New York opened the scoring with a “Gift” goal.

Sounder goalie Tony Chursky was rolling the ball on the ground and going back toward his goal after making a sliding save on a long-ball pass when Steve Hunt snuck in and stole the ball from Chursky and put New York up 1-0 at the 19th minute.

“We can’t give a team like that goals, can we? It’s their birthday. What a gift goal. I don’t believe it. Tony’s experienced, too, but he’s deaf in one ear and can’t hear a thing,” said Mel Machin to The Seattle Times. “I shouted like hell at him. He couldn’t hear me.”

Seattle quickly made the score 1-1 just four minutes later with a goal by Tommy Ord from 9-yards out.

The winning goal was headed in by Giorgio Chinaglia with 13 minutes remaining in the contest.

The Sounders had many chances to score at least two goals in the contest.

Mickey Cave’s header seven minutes into the game that started at 10 a.m. was disallowed by the referee for alleged offsides. “That offside was a bad call,” said Sounder Coach Jimmy Gabriel to the media. “Our boys played great. I’d rather play that way and lose, 2-1, than play badly and win – really. I feld we were unfortunate today. I thought the Cosmos played some super plays in their own ways.”

“We had better chances than they did, Gabriel continued. Mickey with a header, Ord with a header, (Steve) Buttle hit the post and Mike England scraped a post. Dave Gillett hit a rocket that (Shep) Messing just got a finger on or that was in.”

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