Sounders Insider

Sounders-Fire play for Open Cup tonight

Here are some basics on tonight's U.S. Open Cup final: Chicago Fire at Sounders FC.

CHICAGO FIREAT SOUNDERS FC7 p.m., CenturyLink Field.TV: Fox Soccer. RADIO: 97.3 FM.HEAD TO HEAD: Sounders FC leads 3-0-3, and 2-0-1 in Seattle. In this MLS regular season, the Sounders took a 2-1 win at home on April 9 and the clubs played to a scoreless draw at Chicago on June 4. NOTES: This is the final of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, the U.S. Soccer Federation’s national championship, which is open to all amateur and professional soccer teams affiliated with U.S. Soccer. The tournament began in 1914. … If the game is tied at the end of regulation, there will be 30 minutes of extra time. If the score remains even, the winner will be determined by penalty kicks. Four finals have gone into overtime since MLS joined the tournament in 1996. … Chicago is 7-8-16 in this MLS regular season; Seattle is 16-6-9. …The Fire is 4-1 in Open Cup finals, Seattle is 2-0. … A Chicago win would match the competition-record fifth Open Cup title for the club. A Seattle win would make them the first MLS club to win three straight Open Cups. … Goalkeeper Sean Johnson is the only member of the Fire to play every minute of Chicago’s Open Cup competition this season. … The availability of Sounders midfielder Mauro Rosales (knee) and defender James Riley (concussion) will be game-time decisions. Chicago midfielder Sebastian Grazzini (hamstring) is expected to be available. … Chicago midfielder Marco Pappa was named MLS player of the week Monday after recording a hat trick against Salt Lake. … The home team is 10-3 in finals since MLS began participating. … An Open Cup record crowd of around 35,000 is expected. The Sounders have promised to open as much of the stadium as needed to meet demand. … The referee is Alex Prus.QUOTABLE: “The big change for them is they were playing (Dominic) Oduro and (Patrick) Nyarko wide, and they pushed them up top to play with two basically fast strikers. Then they got Grazzini sitting in behind -- although (that duty also has been handled by Daniel) Paladini. They're looking for that creative force. Pavel Pardo has given them some organization in the middle of midfield.” – Sounders coach Sigi Schmid on the Fire, which is 6-1-3 over its last 10 matches in all competitions.NEXT: The Sounders return to MLS regular-season play at 7 p.m. Saturday when the Philadelphia Union visits.

And if you'd like to know more, there's some very good information at the U.S. Soccer website.

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