Minnesota Fall 1-0 to New York Cosmos
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (September 14, 2013) - Minnesota United fall 1-0 at Shuart Stadium in Hempstead, NY to the New York Cosmos (3W-3T-1L, 12pts). Minnesota (2W-2T-3L, 8pts) never seemed to find their rhythm in the attacking end and as a result were held scoreless. The Cosmos got in the scoring column in the 77th minute on a headed effort from Sebastian Guenzatti.
The Cosmos opened the scoring in the 77th minute on a powerful header from Guenzatti, his first goal on the season. The goal was earned from the cross of Hunter Freeman, who found himself shown the straight red card just 60 seconds later after he slid into Minnesota’s Miguel Ibarra with both his cleats showing studs. Minnesota’s speedy winger, Ibarra, along with Calum Mallace were the bright spots for United as they helped control the midfield and put the Cosmos back linke under pressure.
Minnesota entered the evening looking to pull ahead in the North American Soccer League standings with a win and some favorable results from the remaining fixtures. United could not find their scoring boots and as a result fall to 6th in the NASL standings, while the Cosmos take a firm position atop the NASL table with 12 points, ahead of the Rowdies who drew 2-2 with the Carolina RailHawks.
The match opened with the Cosmos controlling possession and finding themselves in open spaces surrounding the United defense. The first real chance came in the 8th minute as the Cosmos’ Hunter Gorskie blasted a shot from 22 yards out that drifted wide and careened into United keeper Matt VanOekel’s side netting. Pablo Campos had Minnesota’s only true chance in the first half in the 16th minute as he found himself bursting into the Cosmos penalty area, but his shot was deflected wide by a New York defender.
The first half saw plenty back and forth play once United found their spells of possession, but the Cosmos controlled the run of play by maintaining the middle third. Calum Mallace provided a bright spot for Minnesota, earning and maintaining possession throughout the pitch; putting the Cosmos under pressure, however the pressure from Mallace could not convert to a goal, and so the teams entered halftime level at 0-0.
The second half began much like the first with the Cosmos controlling the ball early, but in the 52nd minute, United speedster Ibarra dashed into the Cosmos goal area, but keeper Kyle Reynish was quick off his line and stymied the chance. Pablo Campos provided a deft through ball in the 56th minute that found Ibarra open in space, but his finish beckoned and sailed over the Cosmos crossbar.
The match found its most intense moments from 70th-80th minute range as Miguel Ibarra picked up a yellow card for a rough challenge in the 77th, followed by the games only goal. The Cosmos’ Hunter Freeman paraded up the left wing, deep into Minnesota territory and leveled a cross into the danger zone that found Sebastian Guenzatti making a back post run. Guenzatti aided the Freeman cross beyond the outstretched arms of Matt VanOekel into the United net giving New York the 1-0 advantage.
The assist would not be Freeman’s only mark on the scorers sheet as he was shown a straight red card in the 79th minute on a ghastly challenge that saw him go studs up into Minnesota midfielder Miguel Ibarra, leaving little option for the center referee but to show him the red.
The match opened up as the Cosmos seemed slightly stunned by going down to 10 men and United found themselves with a several face-paced chances, but could not put the final execution in the match and were unable to draw level.
Minnesota remains on the road next week as they head to Clarke Stadium in Edmonton, AB. Match kicks off at 3 p.m. CDT. Watch LIVE on MNUnitedFC.com or at our Official Watch Party at Brit’s Pub in downtown Minneapolis.
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