LA Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders FC | 2016 US Open Cup Match Preview
LA GALAXY vs. SEATTLE SOUNDERS FC
STUBHUB CENTER (TRACK STADIUM), Carson, Calif.
July 20, 2016 (U.S. Open Cup)
10:30 pm ET (YouTube)
This quarterfinal matchup features a clash of contrasts: Seattle's Sigi Schmid and LA's Bruce Arena are the league's most successful coaches, but their clubs generally take dramatically different approaches to the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. Since entering MLS in 2009, Seattle have won four Open Cup titles – more than any other side over that span. The Galaxy have won the tournament twice, but not since 2005, and none during Arena's tenure as coach.
Everything riding on USOC?
When Seattle last won the Open Cup in 2014, the Sounders were on a push for an unprecedented domestic treble (an unsuccessful push, as they took the Supporters' Shield but then crashed out of the MLS Cup playoffs). This year, they sit next to last in the Western Conference standings and fans are making ominous rumbly noises. An Open Cup might not make those noises go away, but silverware makes any season better.
How much power in the LA XI?
The Galaxy took down the Portland Timbers 1-0 in the round of 16 to reach Wednesday night's semis – but as usual, they did it without their heaviest hitters. If Arena sticks to his philosophy, don't expect to see the home side's Designated Players on the pitch against Seattle on Wednesday. Then again, on Monday Mike Magee suggested that LA have an Open Cup chip on their shoulder...
The Sounders, who reached the quarters by outlasting Real Salt Lake on penalties, usually play early-round home Open Cup matches at the Starfire Sports Complex. They'll be on the road this time, but should feel right at home, in a way. With the Crossfit Games starting Wednesday at StubHub Center's main stadium, the quarterfinal has been moved to the 2,000-seat Track Stadium.