- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On May 24, 2012
- 3 Comments
- 2012 US Open Cup, Features
Say what you will about the method but you have to give it up to the Portland Timbers, the Seattle Sounders and Real Salt Lake.
Each want the US Open Cup and they want to win it so bad. You can’t get too upset at these clubs wanting to take the US Open Cup seriously here.
All were originally slated to hit the road in the 3rd round of the 2012 US Open Cup. The new rules of the tournament stated that a both clubs in each early round have the chance to host as it is a draw that determine who hosts – not a bid like in previous years.
But the money talks.
I suppose there was no rule stating that MLS clubs couldn’t pony up the cash and considerations to the lower division clubs to host the games instead. It started with Portland, then RSL and Seattle joined in. All made a deal to get the games at their venue, something that definitely didn’t sit well with some fans of teams like the Atlanta Silverbacks or the Minnesota Stars.
Just how is it getting done? Simple it is a three way deal with the two clubs and the USSF. RSL’s GM Garth Lagerwey told MLSsoccer.com that they had to get a sign off from the USSF to do this.
“You certainly have to have US Soccer’s sign-off and approval to get that done,” Lagerwey explained. “It’s a business deal with all three parties: US Soccer, Minnesota and us.”
“Our ownership stepped up again, and through the hard work of Bill Manning we were able to get a deal negotiated to host an Open Cup game,” said Lagerwey. “I think that shows our commitment to winning. We literally did whatever it took to give our team the best chance to win just a first round game.”
Notice the commitment to winning. That is what this all boils down to. Each MLS side want to win this. I honestly don’t have an issue with how they are going about doing this. Sure, I’d love to see the little guys host the big kahunas of MLS but I’m also down with teams going out of their way to show they care about this tournament as well.
Some little fishes will move on after the third round, it almost always happens that way. The big thing to keep an eye out is how many more times MLS clubs have to pay their way to host games.
Again, at least it shows a commitment to winning and going all out to win this tournament. At the end of the day, that’s what we’ve all really wanted for this tournament all along – for MLS clubs to actually give a damn about it.