*Portland or Real Salt Lake will host the U.S. Open Cup final this fall — the most deserving venues among the four teams left in contention. The U.S. Soccer Federation conducted a coin flip Tuesday to determine which bracket would have hosting rights.
If the Timbers defeat RSL next week, they would welcome the Chicago Fire or D.C. United on Sept. 24 at Jeld-Wen Field. If the Utah side advances, Rio Tinto Stadium would host on Oct. 1. Both dates fall on Tuesday nights between weekend league matches.
Citing logistics involving non-soccer events on the RFK Stadium campus during the hosting window, United did not bid for the title game.
The Western bracket won the coin flip, anyway.
Portland and RSL are also in contention for the Supporters’ Shield, while Chicago is seventh in the Eastern Conference and United has won just two league matches. The Timbers enjoy perhaps the best home atmosphere in the league at perpetually sold-out Jeld-Wen while RSL is averaging 18,837. Chicago (13,775) and D.C. (13,668) have struggled at the gate.
The Fire website will provide a live stream of the Chicago-United semifinal next Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. ET. Other online outlets will offer a link, as well. Details are being finalized.
ROOT Sports in Portland will carry the Timbers’ game at RSL next Wednesday (9:30 p.m. ET).
*United is aiming to “make one more addition” to the roster, General Manager Dave Kasper said. However, the newcomer will not necessarily arrive before MLS’s Aug. 8 international transfer window closes. MLS teams have until mid-September to make personnel moves, including the signing of free agents who fall outside international transfer guidelines.
“Nothing is imminent,” Kasper said.
With an eye on next year, United has passed on scenarios that would have provided help only for the remainder of this lost season.
*The top local markets watching Fox’s coverage of the CONCACAF Gold Cup final: Kansas City, San Diego and Washington. Nationally, the U.S. victory over Panama drew a 1.4 rating, equaling the network’s previous high for the 2011 UEFA Champions League final between Barcelona and Manchester United.
Fox averaged 2.4 million viewers over the course of the two-hour match. (Univision also carried the action.) The USA-El Salvador quarterfinal on Fox a week earlier garnered a 0.9 rating.
*Aron Johannsson, the American-born Icelandic forward with AZ Alkmaar in the Dutch Eredivisie, has informed the USSF of his desire to apply for a change of association to represent the United States in international competition.
The federation submitted the petition to FIFA this morning.
“We are excited that Aron has chosen to pursue his international career with the United States. We have been in contact with him for the last several months,” USA Coach Jurgen Klinsmann said. “He is a great young talent with a bright future, and we look forward to introducing him to our team as soon as possible.”
Johannsson, 22, is expected to join the U.S. delegation in Sarajevo for training ahead of the Aug. 14 friendly against Bosnia-Herzegovina. However, he cannot play until FIFA completes the process. It is unclear whether that will occur in time for that match.
After 2 1/2 years with Aarhus, the Alabama-born Johannsson moved to AZ in January and scored three goals. He also scored against Ajax in the Dutch Super Cup on Saturday. Earlier in his career, he attended the
USSF’s IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. His Icelandic appearances were confined to the under-21 squad.