If the Cosmos can duplicate what they accomplished in preseason, the two-time defending North American Soccer League champions should be fine this year.
The Cosmos finished their preseason undefeated, playing the Bermuda national team to a 1-1 draw at Bermuda National Sports Centre in Hamilton, Bermuda Sunday afternoon.
They finished the preseason at 3-0-1, after winning all three of their matches in the Dominican Republic.
Midfielder Andres Flores, who will miss next week’s season opener at Puerto Rico FC due to international commitments, tallied the equalizer in the dying minutes of the match.
“Today’s match was a good test for us,” Cosmos head coach and sporting director Giovanni Savarese said. “We are happy because the team responded well. We will now redirect our attention to our game against Puerto Rico FC next Saturday.”
New York started the match enjoying possession and applying high pressure to the home team. Flores, along with recent signee Eugene Starikov and Salvadoran international Irvin Herrera generated multiple attacks that Bermudan goalkeeper Stefan Dill repelled. The intense winds in the island made it difficult for the Cosmos to maintain possession, but the team continued to attack throughout the scoreless first half.
Though second-half substitute Jimmy Mulligan brought energy to the match, it was Bermuda that broke the deadlock in the 58th minute through midfielder Tre Ming. In what seemed to be an attempt to pass the ball to one of Bermuda’s strikers, the 22-year-old scored from 30 yards, beating goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer after the wind changed the ball’s direction.
The Cosmos continued to fight for an equalizer, testing Dill’s skills through long and short- distance shots from Herrera and Starikov. Two of those attempts missed by inches.
As time was winding down, Starikov picked up a deflected ball from Herrera’s shot on the right-hand side of the penalty area. He crossed it to the center of the box as Flores volleyed the ball to the back of the net. Referee Anthony Bailey whistled the end of the match right after Flores’ goal.