HARRISON, N.J. -- The Cosmos could not make magic happen twice in the US Open Cup. The NASL club fell 4-1 to the New York Red Bulls in the round of 16.
Unlike last years win over the Red Bulls at Stuart Stadium on Long Island, the Cosmos found themselves playing from behind the whole night in New Jersey. The MLS side came out of the gate charging and controlled the play for large chunks of the game.
The Red Bulls found their way onto the scoreboard first in the fifth minute. Sam Lloyd sent a pass from just outside the penalty area to Sal Zizzo. The Red Bulls' midfielder headed the ball from eight yards out past Jimmy Maurer to give the MLS club a 1-0 lead.
The visiting Cosmos evened things up 11 minutes later thanks to Lucky Mkosana. Jimmy Maurer sent a perfect pass to Walter Restrepo, who was able to quickly move the ball up the field. A pass to Mkosana was initially deflected, but a trailing Leo Fernandes sent the ball right back to Mkosana and he tied the game at one.
After several scoring chances by zizzo that were called offsides, the Red Bulls found the back of the net in the 42nd minute. A corner kick by Sacha Kljestan was executed perfectly and Anatole Abang headed the ball home to put the home team ahead 2-1.
The Red Bulls jumped to a two goal lead in the 63rd minute after Chris Duvall was taken down inside the box and referee awarded them a penalty kick. Kljestan buried the shot and gave New York the 3-1 lead, seemingly putting the game out of reach for the Cosmos.
The Cosmos did get a chance to cut their deficit to 3-2 in the 63rd minute, but an unlucky sequence which saw Raul head a shot off the crossbar and Mkosana hit the post on the rebound shot. Maurer made an impressive diving save as the Red Bulls advanced into the attacking zone in the 83rd minute
Mike Grella made it 4-1 in the 90th minute after dancing around the Cosmos' defense and finding the back of the net.
It is the second time in the last two years that the Cosmos have been eliminated in the round of 16. Last year they fell to the Philadelphia Union in the "city of brotherly love." The Cosmos next NASL match is on Sunday in the fall season opener against Indy Eleven.