Fire begin Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup play May 29
CHICAGO, Ill. - The Chicago Fire Soccer Club announced Tuesday that the Chicago Fire will begin the journey for its fifth Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup trophy on Tuesday, May 29 against the winner of the second round match between the Michigan Bucks (PDL) and the Pittsburgh Riverhounds (USL PRO).
The Michigan Bucks will take on the Pittsburgh Riverhounds at Chartiers Valley Stadium in Bridgeville, Pa. on Tuesday, May 22 at 6 p.m. CT in a match that will determine the Fire’s third round opponent. The Fire will host the third round matchup on Tuesday, May 29 at 7:30 p.m. CT at Toyota Park if the Pittsburgh Riverhounds advance. Should the Michigan Bucks advance, the Fire will travel to Ultimate Soccer Arenas in Pontiac, Mich. to take on the Bucks on Tuesday, May 29 at 6:30 p.m. CT.
The Fire have previously hoisted the coveted Dewar Trophy four times, in 1998, 2000, 2003 and 2006.
Since 1997 the Fire have compiled an impressive 28-9-3 record in Open cup play, reaching the semifinal round eight out of 14 times and the final six times. The Fire were defeated by Seattle Sounders FC 2-0 in the 2011 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final at CenturyLink Field. The 2006 title marked the ninth time a team from Chicago won the Open Cup and made the Fire one of five teams to capture the crown at least four times in the tournament's 99-year-long history.
The Chicago Fire PDL squad has already begun play in the 99-year-old tournament, defeating the Croatian Eagles of the United States Adult Soccer Association 1-0 at the Toyota Park practice field on Tuesday, May 15. The Fire PDL will host USL Pro side Dayton Dutch Lions in the second round of the tournament next Tuesday, May 22 at Toyota Park at 6:00 p.m. CT for the opportunity to play the Columbus Crew at Crew Stadium on Tuesday, May 29 at 6:30 p.m. CT.
The 99th edition of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup includes a random selection process for determining home teams from the first round through the quarterfinals among clubs that have applied to host. The process, conducted by a coin flip, gives participating teams with venues meeting tournament standards an equal chance at hosting their possible opponent for these rounds.
Recognized as U.S. Soccer’s National Championship, the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup is an annual competition open to all amateur and professional soccer teams affiliated with U.S. Soccer. In 1999, the competition was renamed to honor long-time soccer pioneer Lamar Hunt.