Match Preview: Mendes Plays Final Home Game as Cosmos Host PRFC

Cosmos on the verge of reaching playoffs in regular season finale
Published Oct 26, 2017


New York Cosmos vs. Puerto Rico FC


Saturday, October 28 at 7:00 pm, ET | MCU Park in Brooklyn, NY


-Follow @NYCosmos and #NYCvPRFC on Twitter for updates

Heading into the final game of the Regular Season, the New York Cosmos control their own destiny. With a win over a suddenly hot Puerto Rico FC, New York will clinch a spot in The Championship. 

Without a win, the Cosmos will have to wait and see if they will be playing in November. New York currently sits fourth in the Combined Standings with 42 points while fifth-place, Jacksonville Armada FC, has 40 points. 

The Cosmos are unbeaten in seven all-time games against Puerto Rico (6W-1D), including a 4-1-0 (W-D-L) record this season. Over their five meetings this season, New York has outscored Puerto Rico 13-6. 

Saturday’s game looks to be an emotional one for the Cosmos and their fans, as captain, Carlos Mendes, will likely be playing his final home game in New York before his retirement at the end of the season. However, the Cosmos will need to overcome the emotion to earn a playoff-clinching win. 

In their last road game, the Cosmos (9-15-7 Combined Standings) earned a crucial point in a wild 4-4 draw at Jacksonville Armada FC. Down 3-1 at halftime, New York rallied to take a 4-3 lead on goals from Eugene Starikov, Lucky Mkosana and Jimmy Mulligan, before the Armada equalized as the teams finished level. Mulligan, Mkosana, and David Ochieng all scored their first goal of the season.   

Finishing their season on the U.S. mainland because of the devastation left behind by Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico FC (5-10-16 Combined Standings) is playing out the schedule, having been long eliminated from playoff contention. They come to New York having won back-to-back games for the first time all season.  

In their last game on Wednesday, Puerto Rico FC defeated FC Edmonton 2-0 in Kissimmee, FL, after first-half goals from Jordi Quintilla and Mike Ramos. In net, Austin Pack made two saves to earn the clean sheet. Now, PRFC have just one more match before they are able to return to the island after spending weeks away from home. 

The Cosmos and Puerto Rico FC are familiar with one another, as this will be their third meeting during the month of October. On October 1, Javi Márquez scored the only goal of the game in a 1-0 Cosmos win at MCU Park. In the teams’ most recent meeting on October 18 at Central Broward Stadium in Lauderhill, FL, the Cosmos earned a 4-1 win behind a pair of goals from Ayoze and a goal from each, Bledi Bardic and Eugene Starikov. A similar performance in the third matchup of the month should put the Cosmos in the playoffs. 

As part of Mendes’ final home game, the first 2,500 fans to enter the game will receive a commemorative captain’s armband. Great seats are still available. To purchase tickets, click here.