Cosmos fall 2-0 to Jacksonville in Coney Island
New York Extends its Winless Streak to 5 Matches
If the New York Cosmos want to make the playoffs, the team will need to improve its form quickly.
The boys in green played to a 2-0 loss against Jacksonville Armada FC on Sunday at MCU Park, stretching their winless streak to five games.
“I think [the Armada’s] first goal took away momentum,” said Cosmos head coach and Sporting Director Giovanni Savarese. “At the beginning of the game, we were doing things the right way, finding spaces and moving forward.
“We had the right energy, but I think [the first goal] was difficult for us, and then the second goal was tough to come back from.”
Both of Jacksonville’s goals game from unlucky incidents in the match.
The visitor’s first goal came in the 29th minute courtesy of an own goal from Juan Guerra. He attempted to clear a free kick delivery with his head, but it bounced into the net as Jimmy Maurer came off his line.
In the 33rd minute, Jacksonville scored again when Ciarán Kilduff tapped in a loose ball in front of goal. It appeared that Maurer had been fouled coming out to clear the ball, but referee Younes Marrakchi felt otherwise.
Despite the lopsided scoreline, the Cosmos were the more dominant team, maintaining possession and creating more chances.
“We tried, we put everything that we could going forward, but we needed a little bit better quality inside the box to be able to be more dangerous,” said Savarese. “I feel at the end, that’s what we didn’t bring in the second half.
“It’s a tough game for us at home. We just have to continue to work. We have more matches to play, and we have to continue moving forward,” he added.
It was New York’s first loss at home to the Armada and only the team’s third defeat at MCU Park this regular season. The team is second to Miami FC for the fewest home losses in the North American Soccer League (NASL).
Andres Flores, who earned man of the match honors on Sunday for completing 34 of 39 passes, reflected on the loss.
“To be honest, I’m sad because of the result,” said Flores. “We worked so hard during the week to try to win this game, but we couldn’t. It was a difficult game so now we have to work harder for the next one.”
He added, “We worked a lot on finding the spaces to go to the attack. Today, our own mistakes made us lose the game. We have to improve more on the defensive side.”
Despite the Cosmos’ poor run of form, New York is still in the driver’s seat for the playoffs thanks to a strong spring campaign when the team finished in third.
The Cosmos remained in fourth place in the NASL Combined Standings, one point above North Carolina FC for the last playoff spot. Only six points separate the teams seeded second through fifth.
Over the coming weeks, however, the table could look a whole lot different as the Cosmos play several must-win games, including a match against first-place Miami FC.
The South Florida squad is atop the Combined Standings with a 16-point cushion on the next team.
The Cosmos have played well on the road recently, having lost only one game in their last four regular season away matches. In addition, New York defeated Miami 3-1 in the first game of the Fall Season.
The Cosmos travel to Miami FC on Wednesday. New York’s game on Saturday against Puerto Rico FC was postponed due to Hurricane Irma.
The team returns to MCU Park for a rematch against Jacksonville on Sunday, Sept. 17 at 5 p.m.