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New York Cosmos 4 - Atlanta Silverbacks 0: Initial Reaction

Opening night saw the Cosmos jump straight to the top of the table in impressive fashion

Mike Stobe

The Cosmos took a little while to get clicking on opening night, but once Carlos Mendes tapped in a Marcos Senna rebound, it was all green and white. By the end of the night Mendes had two, and both Ayoze and Mads Stokkelien chipped in with a goal. The big opening night victory will shoot New York straight to the top of the table based on GD, and will have the club flying high going into week two.

The club still has some work to do in practice this week, as the defensive organization wasn't great this evening. The Cosmos clearly took their foot off the gas a bit after the halftime whistle, but  I have no problem taking advantage of chances to do that during a long NASL regular season. Take the points, take the goals, take the clean sheet, and clean things up ahead of a trip to Edmonton next weekend.

Thoughts:

  • For all the work on adding to the attack that the Cosmos did this winter, their first three goals of the new season came from defenders. Who didn't see that coming, right?
  • Marcos Senna's free kicks are something special. Unless an NASL side convinces Andrea Pirlo to join, I can't imagine the league ever having anyone that consistently produces that same sort of danger from set pieces.
  • I know the wind was really blowing hard, but Jimmy Maurer was scaring me whenever we had to deal with corners today. His 'come for everything' approach would work better if he was getting to every ball, but he wasn't getting to many at all. A better team would have punished the Cosmos today.
  • The Silverbacks managed to catch Ayoze out of position far too often in the first half, and Roversio was getting dragged out of position to cover as a result. As with the comment above, a better team likely would have punished us for being too aggressive.
  • Atlanta looked like you'd expect a team with a part time coach to look. They were torn apart by New York set pieces, and weren't quite organized enough to take advantage of Cosmos' mistakes on the other end.
  • I was really excited by the Stokkelien debut goal, more because of how it was scored. He held off a defender, went up in the air, and nodded a cross into the corner of the net, despite dealing with a ton of wind. That's the sort of thing we didn't have with any of our striking options last season.
  • Next week will bring a very different type of opponent. Eric Wynalda had his side pushing everyone forward whenever possible, where Edmonton generally sit with all available personnel behind the ball.
  • A full season of this is going to be fun.