The US Open Cup MLS Play-In match-ups were announced today by the League, and New York will take on Philadelphia in the 8v9 match up at Red Bull Arena at an April date to be determined.  The winner of the Red Bulls/Union match will have the right to host the side’s next US Open Cup match, which will be against the New England Revolution, also at an April date to be determined.

New York was placed as the #8 seed by virtue of the Red Bulls 2009 MLS standings position, while, as an expansion side, Philadelphia was seeded at #9.

When all is said and done, NY will have to beat Philly, New England, and either Kansas City or Colorado just to make it to the tournament proper (Round of 16), so there is a long road ahead of the Red Bulls, but at least the first matches are in their brand new stadium.    Here is the official coin toss lawyer-speak from MLS:

Consistent with 2008 and 2009, the format for 2010 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup will see six US-based MLS teams automatically qualify for the tournament’s round of 16, based on 2009 regular season finish, while two more US-based MLS teams will also qualify via play-in games.

The six teams that have automatically qualified are the Columbus Crew, LA Galaxy, Houston Dynamo, Seattle Sounders, Chicago Fire and Chivas USA. The remaining nine U.S.-based MLS teams: the New England Revolution, Real Salt Lake, Colorado Rapids, D.C. United, FC Dallas, Kansas City Wizards, San Jose Earthquakes, New York Red Bulls and the Philadelphia Union, will play knockout games to determine the seventh and eighth teams to join the round of 16. New York and Philadelphia will play first to determine New England’s opponent in a round of four knockout games (eight teams).

Home field advantage for these play-in games was decided by coin tosses that took place yesterday. Officials from each team participated in the coin tosses live via a streaming web video conference.

1. Five coin tosses were conducted, in sequential order, for Games A through E to determine the hosts; coin tosses for Games F & G will be conducted shortly after Games A-E are completed.
2. Based on 2009 final regular season standings, the higher seed called heads or tails before the coin was tossed.

The teams have been seeded based on 2009 regular season finish and the games will be as follows [home team listed first]:

Game A (8 v 9/Expansion): New York Red Bulls v Philadelphia Union
Game B (1 v 8): Game A Winner v New England Revolution
Game C (2 v 7): San Jose Earthquakes v Real Salt Lake
Game D (3 v 6): Kansas City Wizards v Colorado Rapids
Game E (4 v 5): D.C. United v FC Dallas
** Play-in games A–E will be completed by the end of April. Teams will announce the date and times of games in the near future.

Game F: Game B winner v Game D winner
Game G: Game C winner v Game E winner

Winner of Games F and G qualify as the final 2 teams in the 2010 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup.
**Play-in games F & G by will be completed by the end of May. Teams will announce the date and times of games in the near future.

What are your thoughts on getting that first round match up not only at Red Bull Arena, but against the Union?  Do you think the US Open Cup will be a priority for the Soler/Backe regime?  If so, will the depth that the team has shown in the preseason help propel the team deep into this domestic cup?  Is seven wins (which is what it would take to win the Open Cup) too much to ask for a team that only produced five wins over 30 MLS matches in 2009?  Does Seattle making an nearly identical run last year (with one less team last year, they had to win six times to win the silverware) give you confidence that its not a Quixotic task?  Share your thoughts in the comments section below.



  1. Matt Says:

    We can win this tournament. Hopefully with no CONCACAF competitions to worry about we will take this one seriously and start filling the trophy case at RBA.

  2. Petke Fan Says:

    Remember RedBulls, we are in this tournament to win it, not just to make up the numbers. Too many times the front office has downplayed the importance of winning this cup because they wanted to prioritize the league season, only to fail at both. This is a free chance to win a trophy, if we work at it.

    Let’s please not embarrass the fans and the organization by making less than an honest effort.

    • noploplease Says:


    • DS Says:

      You know that it’s the coaching staff, not the front office right? You know those are two different things right? It’s the coaching staff that decides to rest the starters for cup matches, not the front office. If you want to complain, which you clearly do, complain to the right people.

  3. Erik Says:

    will tickets to the us open cup be included in the season tix package (sorry, this is my first year as a season tix holder)?

  4. Parrish Says:

    “New England Revolutions”


  5. Dario Says:

    It would be nice to win this.


  6. Toronto Makeup Artist Says:

    Great blog posting, very good information. waiting for your next post..

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