OPEN CUP DATES
ANNOUNCED FOR 2011
The US Open Cup Committee met on 2/14/2011 and announced
the following dates:
May 30 Qualification Deadline
June 14 Tues First Round
June 21 Tues
June 28 Tues Third Round
July 12 Tues Fourth Round
August 30 Tues Semi Final
4 Tues Final
11 US Based USL Pro
9 USL PDL
4 USASA NPSL
Registration is one form for all teams, including the US Open Cup teams. Be sure and complete that form. Also, be mindful
that all communications for scheduling, etc., is done through email. It is mandatory to have an email address listed on the
Open Cup Entry Form Here
Dating back to 1914, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup
is the oldest cup competition in United States soccer and is among the oldest in the world. Open to all affiliated amateur
and professional teams in the United States, the annual U.S. Open Cup is entering it’s 98th tournament in 2011.
In a nutshell, the U.S. Open Cup is very similar
to domestic cup competitions popular throughout Europe, South America and the rest of the world. Cup competitions, which
usually run concurrent with a country’s league season, are open in the early stages to any club that can qualify, giving
local amateur teams a chance to compete against the best teams a country has to offer.
In leagues like the English Premier League, the Serie A in Italy and the Bundesliga in Germany, cup
competitions are prestigious tournaments waged between a country’s strongest teams like Manchester United, AC Milan
and Bayern Munich, and smaller teams like Watford F.C. in England, a small-time club that hit it big in 1984 by making it
all the way to the F.A. Cup Final. Just five years ago, unfashionable Chesterfield of the Second Division (the
third flight in England) advanced to the semi-finals of the 1997 F.A. Cup in England before finally losing.
The winner of each country’s
domestic cup competition, in addition to taking home the prize money, is automatically placed into a tournament to compete
against neighboring countries cup winners. In Europe this tournament is known as the Cup Winners’ Cup competition,
and in North and Central America it is the CONCACAF Cup Winners’ Cup, which was first competed in 1992.
HISTORY OF THE U.S. OPEN CUP
As the oldest, annual team tournament in U.S.
sports history, the U.S. Open Cup dates back to 1914 when the Brooklyn Field Club won the first national title by defeating
the Brooklyn Celtics in Pawtucket, R.I. First instituted as the National Challenge Cup under the aegis of the United
States Football Association, it was conceived as a competition open to all players (amateur and professional) and based upon
England’s Football Association Cup format.
During the Open
Cup’s early years, teams sponsored by industry in the East’s urban centers dominated the competition. Bethlehem
Steel (Pa.) won four Open Cup titles between 1915 and 1919, while Fall River F.C. (Mass.) won five national crowns between
1917 and 1931, tying Bethlehem Steel (a winner also in 1926) and Maccabees S.C. of Los Angeles (1973, 1975, 1977, 1978 and
1981) as the tournament’s only five-time winners.
have been numerous back-to-back winners (eight overall by seven different teams), only Greek American AA of New York, N.Y.
have won three consecutive crowns (1967-1969). While
teams sponsored by industries in the East’s urban centers dominated the Men’s Open and Amateur Cups until the
1950s, the teams from the West and Midwest have flexed their muscles in the later years. In fact, California alone has
garnered the lion’s share of success, winning 10 titles since 1973. Missouri, Illinois and Florida have also appeared
regularly on the winner’s list.
Although it is now a complete "knock-out" tournament,
with a few exceptions the U.S. Open Cup final was a two-leg, home-and-away series between 1928 and 1968.
Despite the prominence of the North American Soccer League from 1967 to 1984, NASL teams rarely showed the
inclination to enter the U.S. Open Cup competition. In fact, until the emergence of Major League Soccer, full professional
teams were almost non-existent in the competition. That has changed in the last seven years, though, with MLS taking
part since 1996, thus helping to make the tournament a true "national" championship.
Due to increased sponsorship and greater media attention, the Open Cup is now beginning to enjoy a prominence
equal to its importance as America’s "open" soccer championship.