Once a year, the following events occur:
1.) The Fourth Round draw for the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup is held,
2.) Merritt complains about it on Twitter,
3.) I (or someone else) accuse him of not taking the competition seriously,
4.) Merritt gives his accusor a nickname. I’ve been “Susan” for quite some time as a result of this.
We then wait a few weeks before sketching out possible line-ups (remembering of course, that the gameday roster cannot name more than five internationals) and begin again at number three as stated above.
And then I sit down and try to write something that captures the magic of the Open Cup so that I may convince even one more person that it’s worthwhile.
It’s worth it because, at least for the next two years, the winner is awarded a CCL berth.
It’s worth it because there’s a trophy attached.
It’s worth it because our closest rivals have won it four times and we haven’t.
It’s worth it because it pits the little guys against the big guys and sometimes the little guys win. We’ve seen this up close. I think we’ve only seen Pong in the stadium twice since.
And it’s worth it because of the high likelihood that something ridiculous will happen. We’ve also seen this and, yes, Clint Dempsey is still suspended.
So, potential for trophy/glory, opportunity to best a rival, reasonable expectation of weirdness. Year after year, I hope that’s enough to engage people. And year after year, I find people who don’t even know it’s happening. People who were at the last home match, people who may have watched the last away match on television or in a bar with their friends.
A thing I learned years ago as a 19-year old journalism student, perhaps the most important thing I learned in j-school, is that 90% of the time, if you act like you’re supposed to be there, people will believe you. Same thing applies here: if we take it seriously, if we act like the Open Cup is important, people will believe us.
If you’re just tuning in, the Timbers will face the Sounders Tuesday, June 13 (7:30 p.m.), at Starfire in Tukwila in the Fourth Round of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup, the oldest national soccer competition in the United States, a competition that predates even the World Cup. As of now (9:30 p.m., June 12), there are still standing room only tickets available through Ticketmaster and the game will be streamed on both the Timbers and Sounders websites. I’m told that the Mad Greek Deli will be screening it, so I might stop in for a gyro. If I hear of any other places screening it, I’ll add them here.
I want that cup, you guys.
As promised, I’m adding the name of another location screening the match: Craft Pour House in Beaverton. Go, buy a beer, reward them for screening a game that not everyone knows about. *Confirmed
Also, there’s a rumor that Beermongers will have it. As with all of these, check before you go.
Adding Lightning Will to the list. They’re on 21st, just a bit north of West Burnside. *Confirmed
Mad Greek Deli, on East Burnside will be screening it. *Confirmed