U.S. Soccer announced the full format for the 2017 U.S. Open Cup on Wednesday. Much like last year’s tournament, the final qualifying round for amateur teams was canceled, and with the shifting in the professional ranks this winter, the tournament proper will feature a total of 99 teams.
Locally, 12 teams from Southern California will participate, with representation from all main groups. Here are the local teams involved this year:
LA Galaxy (MLS, entering in fourth round)
Orange County SC (USL, entering in second round)
Open division teams (all entering in first round):
Chula Vista FC
LA Wolves FC
Moreno Valley Futbol Club
FC Golden State Force (PDL)
Fresno Fuego (PDL)
San Diego Zest (PDL)
Ventura County Fusion (PDL)
Albion SC Pros (NPSL)
The first-round draw will be announced April 12, with the first round kicking off the week of May 10. The second round will be the following week, with USL and NASL teams entering the fray, and the third round will be the week of May 31. MLS teams will enter in the fourth round, slated for the week of June 14.
Local SoCal amateur teams have impressed in recent years in the tournament, with a local side progressing the farthest in the whole field the past two years. The pro teams, meanwhile, have perhaps underachieved, although the Galaxy did reach the semifinal last year after middling form the past several years.
Still, with 1/9 of the teams involved in this year’s Open Cup hailing from Southern California, the odds are pretty good that we’ll see a local side or two impress once again in the oldest competition in American soccer.