U.S. Open Cup Appears Likely To Expand To 64 Teams, Include All Eligible MLS Teams

The Seattle Sounders could be playing for a fourth straight U.S. Open Cup trophy in a significantly expanded field. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Rumored changes to U.S. Open Cup format also include an earlier start and finish date to the 97-year-old tournament.

It looks like the U.S. Open Cup is headed for a much-needed facelift. According to a story at TheCup.US, the 97-year-old tournament is likely to expand to 64 teams in 2012. That field would include all 16 U.S.-based MLS teams, who would enter in the third round.

One of the regular criticisms of the tournament is that only six MLS teams gained automatic entry. Two other teams eventually earned spots, but only after playing in a midseason qualifying tournament.

The story, which cites a source "familiar with the organization of the tournament," says a proposal is currently awaiting approval from the MLS Competition Committee. In addition to adding eight extra spots for MLS teams, it would also include the 16 U.S.-based teams in the NASL and USL-Pro.

The tournament would open in mid-May with 32 amateur teams producing 16 winners that would face the NASL and USL-Pro teams in Round 2. The winners of that round would then play the MLS teams in Round 3. The tournament would eventually wrap up some time in August, considerably earlier than it has in past years when it has run into October.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.