U.S. Open Cup Draw, 2012: MLS Teams Will Do More Traveling

If the Seattle Sounders are to win a fourth straight U.S. Open Cup, they'll have to do more of it on the road.

Unlike past years, the 2012 U.S. Open Cup will feature more of a true draw, which means more traveling for MLS teams.

When the U.S. Open Cup was revamped, the idea was that it would look at least a little more like England's FA Cup. With Wednesday's announcement of the full draw, it would appear to be "mission accomplished."

While MLS teams will have to wait another round before finding out their opponents, there's a pretty good chance that a lot of them will be starting out on the road against lower-division teams. Of the six NASL teams that are in the tournament, for instance, all but one of them would be guaranteed to host their MLS opponents if they are able to advance to Round 3. Only five MLS teams are guaranteed to host their third-round games.

This could lead to more than a few interesting matchups. The LA Galaxy, Portland Timbers and Seattle Sounders could all potentially be forced to travel across the country to play their third-round opponents, the Tampa Bay Rowdies, Wilmington Hammerheads and Atlanta Silverbacks, respectively.

Unlike past years where a straight bidding process determined who would host each game -- meaning teams like the Sounders and D.C. United could largely avoid playing road games -- this year's tournament went to more of a formal draw for the all the rounds prior to the semifinals. As long as teams could meet certain requirements and were willing to pay the $15,000 hosting fee, they have a relatively equal chance of being able to host each round.

For the full bracket, which is apparently subject to change, check out theCup.US.

2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Schedule
THIRD ROUND - Tuesday, May 29
Houston Dynamo (MLS) at Laredo Heat (PDL): Texas A&M International University Soccer Complex; Laredo, Texas; 7:30 p.m. CT

OR

Houston Dynamo (MLS) at San Antonio Scorpions (NASL): Heroes Stadium; San Antonio, Texas; 7:30 p.m. CT

Chicago Fire (MLS) at Michigan Bucks (PDL): Ultimate Soccer; Pontiac, Mich.; 7:30 p.m. ET

OR

Pittsburgh Riverhounds (USL PRO) at Chicago Fire (MLS): Toyota Park; Bridgeview, Ill.; 7:30 p.m. CT

K.C. Athletics (USASA)/Orlando City Soccer Club (USL PRO) Winner at Sporting Kansas City (MLS):LIVESTRONG Sporting Park; Kansas City, Kan.; 7:30 p.m. CT

D.C. United (MLS) at Richmond Kickers (USL PRO): Richmond City Stadium; Richmond, Va.; 7 p.m. ET

OR

Dulles Sportsplex Aegean Hawks FC (USASA) at D.C. United (MLS): Maryland SoccerPlex Stadium; Boyds, Md.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Dayton Dutch Lions (USL PRO)/Chicago Fire PDL (PDL) Winner at Columbus Crew (MLS): Columbus Crew Stadium; Columbus, Ohio; 7:30 p.m. ET

Charlotte Eagles (USL PRO)/El Paso Patriots (PDL) Winner at FC Dallas (MLS): FC Dallas Stadium; Frisco, Texas; 7:30 p.m. CT

Fresno Fuego (PDL)/Fort Lauderdale Strikers (NASL) Winner at San Jose Earthquakes (MLS): Cagan Stadium, Stanford University; Stanford, Calif.; 7:30 p.m. PT

Brooklyn Italians (NPSL)/Rochester Rhinos (USL PRO) Winner at Philadelphia Union (MLS): PPL Park; Chester, Pa.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Long Island Rough Riders (PDL) at New England Revolution (MLS): TBD; Time TBD

OR

New England Revolution (MLS) at Harrisburg City Islanders (USL PRO): Hershey Park Stadium; Hershey, Pa.; 7 p.m. ET

Reading United AC (PDL) at New York Red Bulls (MLS): Red Bull Arena; Harrison, N.J.; 7 p.m. ET

OR

New York Red Bulls (MLS) at Charleston Battery (USL PRO): Blackbaud Stadium; Charleston, S.C.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Chivas USA (MLS) vs. Ventura County Fusion (PDL); TBD; Time TBD

OR

Chivas USA (MLS) at Los Angeles Blues (USL PRO): Titan Stadium, Cal State Fullerton; Fullerton, Calif.; 7 p.m.

PSA Elite (USASA) at Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS): The Home Depot Center; Carson, Calif.; 7:30 p.m. PT

OR

LA Galaxy (MLS) at Carolina RailHawks (NASL): WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, N.C.; 7:07 p.m. ET

Colorado Rapids (MLS) at Tampa Bay Rowdies (NASL): Al Lang Stadium; St. Petersburg, Fla.; Tuesday, May 29 at 7:30 p.m. ET

OR

Jacksonville United (NPSL) at Colorado Rapids (MLS): Dick's Sporting Goods Park; Commerce City, Colo.; 7 p.m. MT

Cal FC (USASA) at Portland Timbers (MLS): JELD-WEN Field; Portland, Ore.; 7:30 p.m. PT

OR

Portland Timbers (MLS) at Wilmington Hammerheads (USL PRO): Legion Sports Park; Wilmington, N.C.; 7 p.m. ET

Seattle Sounders (MLS) at Atlanta Silverbacks (NASL): Atlanta Silverbacks Park; Atlanta, Ga.; 7:30 p.m. ET

OR

Georgia Revolution (NPSL) at Seattle Sounders (MLS): Starfire Sports Complex; Tukwila, Wash.; 7 p.m. PT

Real Salt Lake (MLS) at Minnesota Stars FC (NASL): National Sports Center; Blaine, Minn.; 7:30 p.m. CT

OR

Des Moines Menace (PDL) at Real Salt Lake (MLS): Rio Tinto Stadium; Sandy, Utah; 7 p.m. MT

SECOND ROUND - Tuesday, May 22

Michigan Bucks (PDL) at Pittsburgh Riverhounds (USL PRO): Chartiers Valley Stadium; Bridgeville, Pa.; 7 p.m. ET

Long Island Rough Riders (PDL) at Harrisburg City Islanders (USL PRO): Skyline Sports Complex; Harrisburg, Pa.; 7 p.m. ET

Cal FC (USASA) at Wilmington Hammerheads (USL PRO): Legion Sports Complex; Wilmington, N.C.; 7 p.m. ET

PSA Elite (USASA) at Carolina RailHawks (NASL): WakeMed Soccer Park; Cary, N.C.; 7:07 p.m. ET

Fresno Fuego (PDL) at Fort Lauderdale Strikers (NASL): Lockhart Stadium; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; 7:30 p.m. ET

K.C. Athletics (USASA) at Orlando City Soccer Club (USL PRO): Seminole Soccer Complex; Sanford, Fla.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Reading United AC (PDL) at Charleston Battery (USL PRO): Blackbaud Stadium; Charleston, S.C.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Brooklyn Italians (NPSL) at Rochester Rhinos (USL PRO): Sahlen's Stadium; Rochester, N.Y.; 7:35 p.m. ET

Tampa Bay Rowdies (NASL) at Jacksonville United (NPSL): Patton Park; Jacksonville, Fla.; 7 p.m. ET

Richmond Kickers (USL PRO) at Dulles Sportsplex Aegean Hawks FC (USASA): Maryland SportsPlex Stadium; Boyds, Md.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Atlanta Silverbacks (NASL) at Georgia Revolution (NPSL): RYSA Soccerplex; Conyers, Ga.; 7:30 p.m. ET

Laredo Heat (PDL) at San Antonio Scorpions (NASL): Blossom Athletic Center*; San Antonio, Texas; 7:30 p.m. CT

Dayton Dutch Lions (USL PRO) at Chicago Fire PDL (PDL): Toyota Park Practice Field; Bridgeview, Ill.; 6 p.m. CT

Minnesota Stars FC (NASL) at Des Moines Menace (PDL): Valley Stadium; Des Moines, Iowa; 7:30 p.m. CT

Charlotte Eagles (USL PRO) at El Paso Patriots (PDL): Patriots Stadium; El Paso, Texas; 8 p.m. MT

Ventura County Fusion (PDL) at Los Angeles Blues (USL PRO): Norco Community College*, Norco, Calif.; 4 p.m. PT*

* Note: Changed from original May 1 announcement.

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