Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Philadelphia Union would only host U.S. Open Cup final if facing Chivas USA

The Union are two wins away from their first ever championship. But if they win the U.S. Open Cup, the chance of your being able to see it in person is very small.

Philadelphia Union would only host U.S. Open Cup final if facing Chivas USA

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The Union are two wins away from their first ever championship. But if they win the U.S. Open Cup, the chance of your being able to see it in person is very small.

U.S. Soccer announced the potential hosting scenarios for the Cup final today, and only one of the four possible championship games would take place at PPL Park. That one would involve the Union hosting Chivas USA.

For that to happen, the Union would have to beat Sporting Kansas at PPL Park next Wednesday, then hope that Chivas USA wins at the Seattle Sounders.

If Seattle wins, the Union would contest the Final at CenturyLink Field, home to the Sounders and Seattle Seahawks. The Union have a 1-2 record at CenturyLink Field: they lost there in 2010 and this year, and won there last season.

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The Sounders have not lost a U.S. Open Cup home game since 2007, when they played in the then-USL Division 1. That was the second division of the American soccer hierarchy at the time. Seattle's last defeat of any kind in the Open Cup came in the 2008 semifinals, when they lost at the Charleston Battery on penalty kicks.

Here are the four possible scenarios for U.S. Open Cup final matchups. The big winner is Sporting Kansas City, which would host the final regardless of opponent if it beats the Union:

Chivas USA at Philadelphia Union: PPL Park, August 7 or 8.
Philadelphia Union at Seattle Sounders: CenturyLink Field, August 8.
Seattle Sounders at Sporting Kansas City: Livestrong Sporting Park, August 8.
Chivas USA at Sporting Kansas City: Livestrong Sporting Park, August 7 or 8.

If Chivas manages to upset Seattle, then the Union would face former captain Danny Califf in the championship game. That would be quite a scene. But honestly, the chance of that happening is pretty small. We'll see how things unfold, but I would not expect to see the final take place at PPL Park.

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