CCL 2012-13 Qualifiers: US Open Cup Final Set, History to be Made
Posted on August 31, 2011 12:49 am
After a pair of close semifinal affairs, each one decided by a moment of brilliance from the respective winners’ go-to forwards, the 2011 US Open Cup boils down to a one-off Final on Tuesday, October 4:
Seattle Sounders vs. Chicago Fire
According to the results of the bidding process with the USSF, Seattle will host the match, most likely at CenturyLink Field as they did last year.
Given their current form and the depth of their squad (in spite of the absence of Zakuani), the Sounders will be chomping at the bit to etch their name in bold in the record books, as the first MLS team to win three consecutive Lamar Hunt trophies. In fact, other than DC United in the late 1990s, no MLS team has been as utterly dominant over a competition as Seattle, which in its short existence as a first-division side has yet to lose a single game in the US Open Cup.
In spite of that, the Chicago Fire have the more legitimate claim to the title of “Kings of the Open Cup”, and will aim to extend their lead over everyone else in MLS with a record fifth title. On top of that, the Fire will be looking to return to continental competition for the first time since 2004. They would have done so earlier, if only Jon Busch had managed to palm away Ned Grabavoy’s sudden-death penalty kick and Chicago had managed to knock out a certain Real Salt Lake in the 2009 MLS playoffs; so the Fire will want to make it into the CCL at the second time of asking, especially since they are not certain to have any more chances this year.