There’s really no way to sugarcoat it. We probably witnessed (by the numbers and performance) the Cosmos’ worst performance of the year as they fell at Miller Stadium to Rayo OKC 3-0. With no ejections in this match to knock them out, both Michel and Georgios Samaras got on the board to put New York away.
After a week of constant changes in the lineup, the Cosmos returned to the lineup and formation most closely resembling standard.
The team abandoned the 4-2-3-1 that gave them overwhelming success against the Armada and returned David Diosa, Lucky Mkosana, and David Ochieng to the bench. Andres Flores was not in the 18.
Rayo went with the 4-4-2 we’ve seen them consistently use for a few weeks now. After two games on the back line, Michel was returned to the midfield in place of Derek Boateng. Recent addition Devon Sandoval once again got the start, bumping Billy Forbes back to the midfield.
The game was not an easy watch as the Cosmos never seemed to find their regular rhythm to the match and constantly wasted opportunities, only managing to put three of their fifteen shots on goal.
Rayo OKC would not make the same mistake.
Jimmy Maurer came up big for the Cosmos in the 33rd minute as a through ball from Forbes escaped Jimmy Ockford and got through to Robbie Findley in the box. Maurer, who came off his line yet again, managed to bat it away from the striker saving the Cosmos from going down early in the 33rd minute.
Unfortunately, Ockford would play a part in the first goal as he wrapped his hands around Futty Danso, pulling him down in the box and conceding a penalty. Michel, who leads the team in goals, did not miss adding another goal from the spot to his tally in the 49th.
A 61st minute substitution of David Diosa for Orozco was to no avail as Rayo doubled their lead four minutes later. Michel, fouled just outside the box, was given a free kick opportunity from a prime location and beat Maurer for the second time that evening.
Substitutions continued. Richard Menjivar for Forbes. Mkosana making an entrance for Bover. Boateng finally made an appearance later as Findley was pulled off and Rayo made a bid to close out the match. The last two subs for the evening were Adam Moffat for Hunter Freeman and Georgios Samaras, formerly linked to the Cosmos, for Pecka.
The Cosmos had previously stated that their decision to not sign the Greek striker stemmed from him not passing physical tests. He moved on, signing with the OKC side. It was, then, incredibly ironic that he would score the final goal of the evening after Boateng caught him with a long ball on the run.
With the loss, the Cosmos now fall to 2-0-5 on the road, although they still sit atop the fall and combined tables. With their road woes still in full swing, the Cosmos could be in for some trouble with road matches scheduled in Tampa Bay and Edmonton, two historically difficult matches for them.