Eugene Starikov found the net for the Cosmos in their win Wednesday night. (Photo courtesy of the Cosmos)
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Win and they’re in.
It’s as simple as that, well, at least on paper.
On the field, the Cosmos can help themselves immensely Sunday by defeating Jacksonville Armada SC. If they do register a victory, they will book a spot in the North American Soccer League playoffs.
That would secure fourth place over fifth-place Jacksonville. If the Cosmos draw or lose, their fate will be decided with their final match of the regular season vs. Puerto Rico FC at MCU Park in Brooklyn Saturday, Oct. 28.
Jacksonville trails the Cosmos by two points and third-place North Carolina FC by four points. In its 1-1 draw with FC Edmonton Wednesday night, the Florida side grabbed a lead on a goal by Jack Blake, but was unable to hold onto its advantage.
The Cosmos moved closer to a postseason return with a 4-1 win over Puerto Rico FC in Lauderhill, Fla. Wednesday night. Ayoze led the way with two goals while Eugene Starikov contributed a goal and an assist. Bledi Bardic was also on target.
New York, two-time defending league champions, reached the playoffs in all four seasons since returning to competitive soccer in 2013.
The Cosmos are 4-4-2 against Jacksonville, outscoring its foes, 18-13. However, this season, they have yet to beat Jacksonville with a 0-1-3. In three away meetings, the Cosmos are 1-1-1 in Jacksonville.