PREVIEW | Ottawa Hosts New York In Top-Of-The-Table Clash

Fury FC welcomes the Cosmos to TD Place in a marquee matchup
New York Cosmos Staff | Aug 26, 2015

The midweek clash between the New York Cosmos and Ottawa Fury FC is perhaps the most significant game of the NASL Fall Season to date. New York, the Spring Season Champion and leader of the Combined Standings, visit TD Place facing the Fall Season leader and second-place side in the overall standings. The Cosmos have a five-point cushion overall, while Ottawa is up four points in the Fall.

If either team can grab a victory it would go a long way in pushing for home field advantage throughout the postseason, which will be awarded to the team with the best overall record between the Spring and Fall Champions.


New York Cosmos: The Cosmos are in fine form on both ends of the pitch. They're 4W-2D-0L in their last six games and have a +6 goal differential in that time frame. What initially looked like the most physically challenging month of the season has turned into a banner one for the green and white. With five of their seven August games behind them, the Cosmos have won four and drawn one, coming from behind in every fixture but one.

A win on Wednesday night would help New York climb to within a point of Ottawa for the Fall Season lead and give them an eight point edge in the Combined Standings. The Cosmos are in the midst of three games in nine days. They'll finish that run with the Carolina RailHawks, who they defeated 3-1 at WakeMed Soccer Park this past Saturday, on August 30.

Ottawa Fury FC: The Cosmos will meet a rested Ottawa side eager to get back to its winning ways. Fury FC's last match was a 2-1 loss to Minnesota United on August 15 that snapped a 12-game undefeated streak. Ottawa has already won four matches at TD Place during this Fall Season.

Their goals come from everywhere; 6-foot-4 forward Tom Heinemann is the team leader with four, but six players have scored at least twice in league play. Fury FC's defense is a great strength. The team hasn't let in more than two goals in a match since April, and set the league record for most minutes played without conceding a goal earlier this year.

Defeating the Cosmos at home on Wednesday would draw Ottawa closer to recapturing the overall lead in the standings, which it held briefly earlier this Fall Season, and solidify its top spot for the Fall.


The Cosmos are perfect in four previous meetings with Fury FC, recording four wins. However, each game has been decided by just one goal. The most recent meeting was in the Spring, a 1-0 Cosmos win at MCU Park in Brooklyn on May 2. Lucky Mkosana was the goalscorer for the home side in the victory.


Golden Goalkeepers: New York’s Jimmy Maurer and Ottawa’s Romuald Peiser are the only two goalkeepers in the league to start every match this season, and they lead the league in saves and goals against average (min. 3 starts). Maurer has the edge in stops, with 51 compared to Peiser’s 48, but his French counterpart tops the NASL with an impressive 0.89 GAA. Both have been recognized as league Player of the Month this year: Maurer in April and Peiser in June.

Streaking Defenses: With the play of their goalkeepers, it’s unsurprising that these two teams have turned in impressive defensive performances in 2015. Fury FC did not concede a goal in six straight matches over a two-month stretch, setting an NASL shutout record in the process. The Cosmos started the Spring Season conceding just once in five games. They have the best goal differential in the league, +14, and Ottawa is third at +6.

Leo to Lucky: In the Cosmos’ 3-1 road win against Carolina on August 22, midfielder Leo Fernandes assisted Lucky Mkosana for the third time in league play this year. All three of the Brazilian-American’s assists have gone to Mkosana, and Mkosana’s lone assist of the season was to Fernandes. The connection has paid off – Fernandes is the team’s leading scorer with seven goals, and Mkosana is tied with Raúl for second (4).

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