On Sunday night, the San Francisco Deltas clinched the North American Soccer League championship by defeating the New York Cosmos 2-0 at Kezar Stadium.
Tommy Heinemann and Devon Sandoval scored for San Francisco, securing the victory against the two-time defending champions. The match kicked-off with high tensions as New York’s Juan Guerra and Delta's goalkeeper Romuald Peiser got into an altercation during a corner, and despite getting away with just a warning, it set off the mood for the rest of the match.
San Francisco's organized strategy held off New York for the rest of the game and on the 19th minute, Heinemann scored a penalty after Jimmy Mauer brought down Brazilian winger Jackson in the box.
After the goal, the Cosmos could not find a way to score as the hosts stayed resilient. In the last kick of the game, Devon Sandoval made it 2-0 and securing the championship, making it a fairy tale ending for this first-year team.
“To win with this group with all that we’ve gone through is...unbelievable,” Heinemann said. “I don’t understand how soccer can’t succeed in San Francisco. If you were here tonight, you know it can succeed in San Francisco.”
This victory was a bitter sweet moment for everyone involved in NASL as the future of the team and the league is in jeopardy.