At long last, after a two-year hiatus, the U.S. Open Cup, the United States’ oldest soccer competition, is back in 2022, and on Tuesday, defending USL Championship title-holder Orange County SC will be entering the fray.
They will host NISA outfit Los Angeles Force, who finished 2nd in their regular season last year and have therefore qualified for one of their league’s Open Cup berths. Playing at Cal State LA, there are plenty of familiar faces on the current squad, including several former Orange County SC players: forwards Harry Forrester and Chandler Hoffman, midfielder Edson Alvarado and defender Juan Pablo Ocegueda.
Orange County had the weekend off from league action, so they’ll be able to pay full attention to this game, and hopefully they take the match seriously, since it’s a domestic cup competition, after all. Their deepest runs have come in 2015 and 2017, when they went to the 4th round. This year, they’re starting in the 2nd round, so they’ll need to get a couple wins to match that. But given the talent and experience of their opponent, even if they’re down the soccer pyramid, OCSC can’t walk in and expect a victory, I think the Force will look to spring an upset and could very easily take the win. This one should be a battle.
How to watch
Tuesday’s U.S. Open Cup game between Orange County SC and Los Angeles Force will take place at Championship Soccer Stadium in Irvine. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 pm PT. You can watch the match on ESPN+.
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