U.S. Open Cup: Sounders Vs. Chivas


In other countries, professional soccer teams that do poorly risk getting relegated to a lower division, while those that do well are promoted to a higher one. In those worlds, the Seattle Sounders, currently second place in the second-tier United Soccer League, would be poised to move up to Major League Soccer, but pro soccer in America is decidedly undemocratic. Thankfully, U.S. soccer comes to its senses every year for the U.S. Open Cup, an all-comers tournament which serves as the country’s de facto national championship. Though MLS teams have dominated in recent years, all underdogs can take inspiration from the 1999 Cup, when the USL Rochester Rhinos upset four MLS squads to take home the Dewar Challenge Trophy. A 2-1 win in June over archrival Portland earned the Sounders a third-round Cup match against MLS’s Chivas USA and a chance to prove it belongs with the big boys. Chivas, which features two former Sounders, goalkeeper Preston Burpo and forward Maykel Galindo, has beaten the Sounders in two previous exhibition games, but this time it counts.

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