Well, the new tournament has started and already some upsets in the mix:
CHICAGO (April 7, 2022) – The final matchday of the 2022 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Second Round brought three more cupsets and was capped off by an explosion of goals (11 in total) in the last two games of the evening. In all, eight final teams punched their ticket to the Third Round, which will see the entrance of 17 lower seeded U.S. based Division I (MLS) clubs when play takes place from April 19-21 on ESPN+.
- The match between Charleston Battery (USLC) and South Georgia Tormenta FC (USLL1) originally scheduled for Wednesday, April 6 was postponed to Thursday morning due to inclement weather. Tormenta FC won the match 1-0 at Patriots Point Soccer Stadium in Mt. Pleasant, S.C. to kick off the final Second Round matchday with a cupset. They were followed by impressive upsets from Chattanooga FC (NISA), who dispatched Memphis 901 FC (USLC) 3-1, and Greenville Triumph SC (USLL1) who slipped past Oakland Roots (USLC) 2-0.
- Elsewhere, Rochester New York FC (MLSNP), Hartford Athletic (USLC) and Birmingham Legion FC (USLC) all cruised to victory before the fireworks began out west where Sacramento Republic FC (USLC) scored a 6-0 rout of Portland Timbers U23 with all the goals coming in the first half — and California United Strikers FC (NISA) blanking local qualifiers San Fernando Valley FC (Calif.) 5-0.
- Besides the 17 MLS squads, the Third Round will feature 15 clubs from Div. II (USL Championship), 14 from Div. III: USL League One – 8, NISA – 4, MLS NEXT Pro – 2, and two Open Division amateurs: USL League Two – 1, NPSL – 1.
All that offered above is pure information about the US Open Cup as things stand today – now for some editorial opinion.
This tournament approach is the biggest ripoff of an “Open” soccer tournament in the world – since when does geographic location have anything to do with how a tournament is organized – oops – there’s the Men’s and Women’s World Cup I guess…
Okay, I’m convinced the idea is a good one, but the United States is NOT the size of the entire world – it’s fifty states all pretty much located within a reasonable geographical boundary where it’s usually no more than a five hour flight between the east and west coast.
So WHY it is that EVERY YEAR this tournament is played small/medium/large teams from the northeastern coast of the United States never-ever face their counterparts from the southeastern US, middle America or the West Coast until much later in the competition?
Every year we usually see the bigger MLS teams make a run for the cup no differently than they do in a geographically organized MLS. Meaning the US Open Cup is really no different that MLS Playoffs. (Boring)….
If it’s a true Open Cup then the geographical boundaries need to be removed. It’s just not proper cricket that we, as a nation of growing soccer supporters, have to put up with this bollocks.
Isn’t it ironic that a mostly purely capitalistic country has the MOST socialistically developed soccer league – while the primarily socialistically developed continent of Europe (the big land across the Atlantic pond that Donald Trump was trying to abandon as part of NATO) has the most purely capitalistic soccer leagues in the World.
And we wonder why the United States Men’s National Team gets routinely thrashed by most European football teams… As for the Women’s team – well it’s likely, given league development in Europe, the dominance of ‘athleticism’ by our great female athletes will be surpassed by a large margin in 2023.
US Soccer is a pathetically rich organization that sustains the status quo…
Maybe NEXT year we will see a true Open Cup that drops geographical boundaries and completely opens up the game.