Cosmos Fall 2-0 to Armada After Two First Half Goals in Brooklyn

Juan Arango and David Diosa make their Cosmos return
Published Sep 3, 2017
The New York Cosmos played to a 2-0 loss against Jacksonville Armada FC on Sunday night at MCU Park.
“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, 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.”
The Cosmos put their home field advantage to use from the get-go, with Javi Márquez testing a shaky Caleb Patterson-Sewell in the first minute of play. New York had the first set piece of the night when a 5th minute cross by Andrés Flores into the penalty area was deflected over the net for a corner.
The action continued in New York's favor, with Juan Guerra connecting to a rebound from a 20th minute Márquez free kick to test Patterson-Sewell once more. Eugene Starikov nearly found the far post a minute later off a pass from Márquez, a notable play that was named the HSS Back in the Game Moment.
As the match got more physical, emotions were front and center, leading to the ejection of Jacksonville Armada Technical Director, Nathan Walter, from the technical area in the 24th minute.
The tide turned away from the hosts in the 29th minute, as the Armada went ahead after Guerra scored an own goal attempting to clear a Mechack Jérôme free kick delivery. Maurer prevented the visitors from doubling their lead, getting a one-handed save to Derek Gebhard's far post shot in the 32nd minute.
Jacksonville found the target in the 33rd through Ciarán Kilduff, whose right-footed blast from the center of the box flew in past Maurer. New York's appeals for an infraction leading up to the goal inside the penalty area went unheard by referee, Younes Marrakchi.
Trailing 2-0 at the top of the half, the Cosmos came back more determined than ever. Starikov attempted a bicycle kick from the right side of the box, sending the ball on top of the net three minutes into the next 45’. Jacksonville looked to increase their lead in the 61st minute, but Maurer came off his line to stop Gebhard in his tracks.
The Cosmos made their presence known in the final third when Ayoze connected to a 67th minute cross from Márquez. A Flores cross found Starikov in the 68th, but the forward's header was punched away by Patterson-Sewell. The action shifted to the other end of the field, with Maurer deflecting Jérôme's 71st minute free kick. A 77th minute corner then gave the subbed-in, Pablo Vranjicán, an imposing header, forcing Patterson-Sewell to go down for the save.
The Cosmos dominated possession and had more chances, but couldn't get past the Armada defense.
Final score aside, New York were glad to welcome back two teammates, both of whom had an instant impact as second half substitutes. David Diosa took his spot in the Cosmos back line in the 59th minute, registering a 60th minute shot and winning a free kick in the 64th for his team. Juan Arango, who came on in the 83rd, delivered a 90th minute free kick that was knocked away by Patterson-Sewell.
Andrés Flores earned his first Emirates Man of the Match award this year, as the Cosmos went down 2-0 to the Armada at MCU Park.
Savarese noted that New York's defensive game in the needs some improvement, and upcoming games will provide the perfect opportunity.
“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. 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.

The Cosmos embark on a road trip, playing Miami FC on Wednesday, September 6 at 8:00 pm.
The team returns to MCU Park for a rematch against Jacksonville Armada FC on Sunday, September 17 at 5:00 pm. Tickets are on sale now. For more information, click here.