Match Recap: Strikers 0, Cosmos 3
Photo credit- Rosa Cavalcanti
Match: Fort Lauderdale Strikers (FTL) v. New York Cosmos (NYC)
Competition: North American Soccer League 2014 Spring Season- Matchday 8
Venue: Lockhart Stadium; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Kickoff: 7:30 p.m. ET
Weather: 85 °F, cloudy
NYC- Mads Stokkelien (penalty kick)- 64th minute
NYC- Jimmy Ockford (Joseph Nane)- 83'
NYC- Danny Szetela (Sebastian Guenzatti)- 85'
Fort Lauderdale Strikers (4-2-3-1) - Oka Nikolov; Darnell King, Rafael Alves, Stefan Antonijevic, Ivan Guerrero (C) (Ronaldo Vieira, 76); Chris Nurse, Pecka; Shawn Chin (Yaikel Perez, 73), Mark Anderson, Martin Nuñez; Marius Ebbers
Unused substitutes: Lionel Brown, Mitchell Lopez, Aly Alberto Hassan, Manny Gonzalez, Colin Murphy
New York Cosmos (4-4-2) - Jimmy Maurer; Hunter Freeman, Carlos Mendes (C), Roversio (Jimmy Ockford, 70), Jimmy Nealis; Sebastian Guenzatti, Joseph Nane, Danny Szetela, David Diosa (Hagop Chirishian, 58); Mads Stokkelien, Paulo Mendes (Hunter Gorskie, 73)
Unused substitutes: Kyle Zobeck, Hans Denissen, Alessandro Noselli, Jemal Johnson
NYC- Hunter Freeman (caution)- 57th minute
FTL- Martin Nuñez (caution)- 61’
NYC- Roversio (caution)- 68’
NYC- Sebastian Guenzatti (caution)- 73’
FTL- Pecka (caution)- 79’
Officials : Referee: Ted Unkel; Assistant Referees: Randy Cook, Felix Carranza; Fourth Official: Trent Vanhaitsma
Strikers Fall to Cosmos 3-0 at Lockhart Stadium
Fort Lauderdale, FL (May 31, 2014) – A second-half surge from the New York Cosmos (5W-1T-2L, 16 pts) propelled the side to a 3-0 victory over the Fort Lauderdale Strikers (4-0-4, 12 pts) at Lockhart Stadium in front of 5,572 fans. With the defeat the Strikers are mathematically eliminated from winning the NASL Spring season title, while the Cosmos remain in contention along with Minnesota United FC and San Antonio Scorpions.
The Strikers can still win the Fall Season or finish the year with one of the top two best records in order to make the playoffs.
Mads Stokkelien earned and converted a penalty kick to open the scoring while late strikes from Jimmy Ockford and Danny Szetela ensured victory for New York.
Shawn Chin went close to opening the scoring in the 18th minute of the match. The midfielder spotted Cosmos’ goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer off his line and attempted to chip the ball over him from more than 40 yards away. The ball sailed over Maurer and smashed off the underside of the bar but did not cross the line.
Mark Anderson, perhaps inspired by Chin’s earlier effort, attempted to chip Maurer from the halfway line. The shot took the Cosmos keeper by surprise but it was off target from Anderson.
The game was forced into a 15 minute delay shortly after the second half kicked off due to a power outage on the South side of the stadium. Once the lights came back on play resumed from the 51st minute
Shortly after the restart Marius Ebbers struck the post. Chin powered down the right side and centered a low ball for the big German forward to hit. The ball cannoned off the post and Anderson could only manage to get a slight touch on the rebound, knocking it wide.
The Cosmos opened the scoring in the 64th minute from the penalty spot. Oka Nikolov guessed correctly on the effort from Stokkelien, but the Norwegian’s effort had too much pace on it.
The goal seemed to take the wind out of the Strikers’ sails and the Cosmos began to take control of the match. The Strikers had one great chance left when Darnell King broke through on goal. He was taken down just outside the box by Roversio, who received a yellow card for the challenge from behind.
Two quick goals from Ockford and Szetela in the 83rd and the 85th increased the Cosmos’ lead to 3-0, a scoreline they held until the conclusion of the match.
The Strikers final match of the Spring Season is Saturday June 7th against the San Antonio Scorpions in San Antonio. The team then goes on a break until July 12th when they open the season at home against Minnesota United FC. Fall Season tickets are on sale starting at just $90 by visiting www.strikers.com or calling 954-606-0400.
Coach Kronsteiner- “We played very well. In the first half our goalkeeper didn’t have to make one save. The second half was good too. But the penalty kick hurt us. It really opened things up. When you’re down by a goal with 10 minutes left, you try to take off a defender and put in an extra forward, but it didn’t work.”