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New York Cosmos to play in NASL in 2013

The New York Cosmos will return next season, ending a nearly 30-year absence from professional soccer.

The Cosmos joined the North American Soccer League on Thursday, the second- tier of American soccer.

The Cosmos were the most famous team in the original NASL in the 1970s and early 80s, but folded in 1985. The club was revived in 2010.

The former team featured legendary players Pele and Franz Beckenbauer, among others, and captured five NASL titles (1972, 1977, 1978, 1980 and 1982).

The original NASL folded in 1984. Major League Soccer, which started in 1996, is the new top tier of American soccer. The current NASL is recognized as the second division, and has teams in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean.