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Sounders and Dallas take Open Cup seriously

Other than the addition of SammyOchoa (post below), the main topic with the Sounders today was the U.S. Open Cup semifinal against Dallas coming up Tuesday at Starfire Sports Stadium.

Here's some of what coach Sigi Schmid had to say:

On the semifinal)“It’s an important game for us because we have always taken the Open Cup seriously. Obviously Dallas takes it seriously as well because Lamar Hunt was their original owner and the Hunt family still owns the team. I think it’s a game of massive importance but we want to accomplish something that no MLS team has done by winning three in a row. We’ve already got something with two in a row but anytime we can make an achievement that sets us apart it’s important to our club.”

On playing Dallas for the second time in 10 days) “It seems always when we run into Cup opponents it seems we play them in league fairly recently prior to a Cup game. Obviously that’s going to add something to the game. We’ve both been on a very, very hectic schedule. There’s probably in the past week has been a little more hectic than ours because of the situation in Toronto. But you’re looking at two teams that have played a lot of games in the last three weeks so it might be a battle of attrition at the end of the day.”

On how busy schedule behind, combined with a 10-day break in games ahead, affects selecting Tuesday roster) “It’s the busy schedule leading into it because you can’t say, ‘Oh, well you’re going to get five days off so even though you are really, really tired, because you are going to get five days off well, all of a sudden you have a shot of adrenaline.’ I don’t think that necessarily happens. But we also know – we have talked to the team about – this is a stretch of games we have to get through, this is the last of the work days so whatever you need to do to maintain your focus. I think sometimes mentally you want to get a break in and reminding the guys that there is no break until Wednesday. Mentally we have got to stay focused, stay sharp and keep our attention to the task at hand.”

On hosting the Open Cup final ... if they win) “I think that should serve as motivation. I think all the players know the feeling from last year was a tremendous event. Our fans turned out obviously in great numbers for that game and I think it was a great celebration. I think knowing how that felt should be motivation going into this game.”

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