What: U.S. Open Cup, round of 32.
Where: Richmond City Stadium.
When: 7 p.m.
At stake: With a victory, United would play the Philadelphia Union or Rochester Rhinos on June 5 or 6 at Maryland SoccerPlex in Montgomery County.
Outlook: Modeled after non-league competitions in Europe, the U.S. Open Cup was founded in 1914 and involves clubs from amateur to MLS. The Seattle Sounders of MLS have won the past three titles, the longest hold on the trophy since 1969. No club has ever won four straight.
United won the championship in 1996 and 2008, and finished second in ’97 and ’09. The Kickers, who compete in the third-division USL, won it in 1995, the year before MLS launched. United and the other MLS sides received byes through the first two rounds. Richmond began play last week with a 4-0 victory over the Aegean Hawks, an amateur squad from the Washington area. Three amateur teams are still alive, including Cal FC, coached by former U.S. national team star Eric Wynalda.
United and the Kickers are meeting in the Open Cup for the fifth time since 2001; D.C. has won three of four. United is 17-3-0 against lower-division opponents. While D.C. is atop MLS’s Eastern Conference with an 8-4-3 record, the Kickers are 2-2-4 in their 11-team league. On Saturday, former University of Virginia F Chris Agorsor scored twice in added time to lead Richmond over the Wilmington (N.C.) Hammerheads, 3-1.
Before arriving in MLS 11 years ago, United star Dwayne De Rosario played for the Kickers. However, he and United D Dejan Jakovic are unavailable Tuesday because of Canadian national team duties. Coach Ben Olsen is likely to start a mix of regulars and reserves.
— Steven Goff