New York Cosmos to Host Fall Season Champion Ottawa in Championship Final

IMAGE, NY COSMOS

by JAKE NUTTING

The New York Cosmos’ opponent for next Sunday’s championship has been locked in after Fall Season Champion Ottawa Fury FC dispatched the third seed Minnesota United FC in similar fashion to the way the Cosmos beat their semifinal opponent this weekend.

The Fury rallied back in front of a modern era NASL postseason record crowd of 9,346 to erase an early one-goal deficit and scored two goals through the foot of Tom Heinemann.

The Loons quieted the large contingent of home supporters only seven minutes into the match when midfielder Daniel Mendes was steamrolled in the box and earned an early penalty. Minnesota’s leading scorer Christian Ramirez stepped to the spot and calmly converted the opportunity.

Going down early forced the normally patient Fury to press and take more risks going forward. They took hold of the half thanks to high intensity in every area of the field and were rewarded with a handful of threatening chances. Ottawa attackers failed to put the ball on net in a couple of unmarked situations in front of goal, but Minnesota keeper Sammy Ndjock brilliantly denied a Julian De Guzman blast from outside the box that was destined for the top corner.

Ottawa managed to get back on level terms in the blink of an eye in the second half. Before the first minute of the closing half had even elapsed, forward Tom Heinemann chested the ball down to create space and penetrated the penalty area before rifling a shot on net that Ndjock could not get a handle on.

The remainder of the second half was full of end to end play as both sides looked for a go ahead goal, but quality penetration and finishing in the final third were hard to come by. For the second straight year, Minnesota was forced into extra time in their semifinal match. Last year’s Loons were knocked out in penalties. This year, though, their opponent decided things much sooner through another left-footed strike from Heinemann.

NASL Golden Glove winner Romuald Peiser had a quiet night in net for the Fury until Minnesota surged in the final minutes, desperately searching for an equalizer. Peiser stood his ground to parry away short range efforts from Justin Davis, J.C Banks, and Greg Jordan in the dying moments to send his team to the championship final.

New York Cosmos vs. Ottawa Fury FC This Year:

New York and Ottawa ended the regular season even on points at the top of the combined table, as well as head to head in three regular season encounters. The Cosmos comfortably took the first match 1-0 in May and the two sides then played to a scoreless draw in August. The Fury, though, dealt the Cosmos their worst defeat of the year in their most recent battle. Ottawa claimed that September 22 match at Shuart Stadium 4-1.

The Spring and Fall Season winners will meet again at Shuart Stadium to determine who will hoist the Soccer Bowl trophy this year. Kick off is scheduled for Sunday, November 15 at 5 p.m. ET.

  • Cosmo

    Cosmos should have rented red bull arena or played at some other stadium with a better atmosphere.

  • Kevin

    The problem Ottawa presents is their defense. They’ll pack a lot of players into that box during transition.

  • Scott

    agreed that Hofstra is not the ideal spot for the final to be held.

    • Cosmo

      I don’t think cosmos hate more red bull than nycfc and they could have paid enough money to rent red bull arena since red bull arena has become more like rent me arena for soccer.
      What about Icahn stadium at Randall’s island or mets stadium and make tickets dirt cheap.
      As a matter of fact, cosmos should move to Icahn stadium.

      • Jordy

        Amen, and amen.

  • William

    what a win !!!!!! great atmosphere great setting on Coney Island so happy with the win very exciting to be a part of.

  • Terry

    Sorry – It’s not the stadium it’s the lack of marketing….A great product – too bad so few people know about it

    • William S

      For sure

  • Kevin

    I don’t think Randalls island is any better though. When was the last time that field was renovated.