Cosmos Conclude 2017 NASL Season With 2-0 Loss Against San Francisco

Cosmos unable to find late equalizer as Deltas win first NASL title
Published Nov 13, 2017

The New York Cosmos fell behind early and weren’t able to make up for it, as they lost to the San Francisco Deltas 2-0 on Sunday night in The Championship Final at Kezar Stadium.

The win gives the Deltas an NASL Championship in their inaugural season, becoming the first expansion side to accomplish the feat since the 2011 Minnesota Stars.

“I’m very proud of our guys and the effort they put into this match,” said Cosmos Head Coach and Sporting Director Giovanni Savarese. “It was a difficult field to play on, and we couldn’t find the goal tonight.”

A physical first half saw both sides question the officiating at times, with fouls and cards given on both ends in the opening 45 minutes.

The Cosmos got the game’s first chance in the eighth minute. Off a corner, Javi Márquez got a foot on a cross to send the ball toward goal. San Francisco goalkeeper, Romuald Peiser, was able to get a piece of it, deflecting it out for a corner.

However, it was the home side that got on the board first in the 18th minute. Off a New York turnover, Cosmos goalkeeper, Jimmy Maurer, took down Deltas attacker, Jackson, in the box. The referee pointed to the spot, giving the Deltas a penalty kick. From the spot, Tommy Heinemann converted to give San Francisco a 1-0 lead.

Heinemann nearly had a second goal in the 40th minute. But Maurer was up to the task and made the save as the Deltas led 1-0 at halftime. Despite earning seven corner kicks in the first half, the Cosmos were outshot 7-5.

In the second half, the Cosmos did all they could to try and put an equalizer past Peiser, who was hobbled for most of the night after falling hard on his side early in the second half.

Peiser denied Emmanuel Ledesma’s low shot in the 62nd minute, and the keeper again remained down after making the save.

Fifteen minutes later, the Cosmos put two balls toward goal. On the first one, Eugene Starikov’s cross went across the face of goal, but nobody was on the receiving end to score. Seconds after, the ball deflected toward goal, and the keeper elevated to punch it over the bar.

Juan Guerra sent a header just over the bar in the 82nd minute, and that would prove to be one of the Cosmos’ final chances.

Deep into stoppage time, with the Cosmos desperate for a goal, the Deltas added a tally in transition from substitute, Devon Sandoval, on the final kick of the night, giving the Deltas a 2-0 title-clinching win.

“We want to congratulate the Deltas on their win,” Savarese added. “They are a great team and played well tonight.”

The loss also ends the legendary career of Cosmos captain, Carlos Mendes. On defense, the captain completed all 40 of his passes in his final game. In five seasons with the club, Mendes was a tremendous representative of the New York Cosmos, both on and off the field, winning three NASL Championships alongside Savarese.