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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Sounders win fourth US Open Cup Title in Extra Time

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What a fantastic final we saw at PPL Park last night as the Philadelphia Union played toe to toe against the Seattle Sounders who are three time US Open Cup champions and had a job to do which was win their fourth which they failed in penalties back in 2012 at Sporting Park against Sporting Kansas City.

While this was the first final inside the state of Pennsylvania in modern times for the US Open Cup the Union were engaged and ready to attack the Sounders for their first ever title during their short, but interesting five year history as a free kick for the Union got them on the board late in the first half.

Cristian Maidana took the free kick in the 38th minute just a few yards away from the Seattle area and somehow out of nowhere Maurice Edu got in between two Sounders defenders and found a way to make some space for himself and headed in the first US Open Cup Final goal in Union History. But while the Union took that lead into halftime, it wasn’t going to be for long.

Chad Barrett quickly leveled the score in the 47th minute when a free kick was headed a couple of times from within the area, till Barrett got his head on the ball and puts it into the back of the net. From that point on the Sounders were attacking and showed their energy as the better side. Every time they attacked the Union’s net, Zac MacMath was shining with saves, but Stephen Frei made some solid saves as well as getting help from the posts & crossbar.

But in overtime that’s when the Sounders pounced and dominated the match. A great run in the 101st minute by Obafemi Martins on the far side of the field, till he held up & found a trailing Clint Dempsey who took his shot one time bending the ball inside the near post for the lead & in the 114th minute Martins put the final nail in the coffin to earn the Sounders their fourth title in five tries.

To the Union fans who came to PPL Park for the clubs first ever US Open Cup Final that were totaled at 15,256 did a fantastic job attending, supporting and I hope they will come to future US Open Cup Union games and fill the stadium as this knockout competition is fun to watch.
The Seattle Sounders have tied the Chicago Fire as the two MLS sides in modern day history to achieve four US Open Cup championship and are both one shy of the famed Bethlehem Steel of Pennsylvania & Maccabee SC club from Los Angeles who have five titles.

Once again the American Soccer Community celebrates another fantastic final for the National Championship of US Soccer and we can only hope that 2015 will be bigger and better than this edition was.


Author: Daniel Feuerstein

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