Steve Goff, that sly dog from the Soccer Insider, sneaked the following into his Presidents’ Day review of soccer news (and it occurs to me, only now, that this could be why things seem so damned quiet today):
“*The U.S. Open Cup schedule is much more compact this year. Pending USSF approval, the round of 16 to the championship game will be held over an eight-week stretch between July 1 and Aug. 26. No more late-round matches in the fall, when MLS clubs are focused on the playoffs.”
For what it’s worth, I like it. In the past, I have advocated such wackiness as making the U.S. Open Cup the pre-season tournament for both Major League Soccer (MLS), the United Soccer Leagues (USL), and, well, everyone. Yeah, it would stretch the calendar, but I don’t think we’re doing players any favors by stacking up the games during the season. In my mind’s eye, I’m seeing a mini-tournament to decide the winner that would look like an expanded version of the College Cup – e.g. a one site, perhaps 8, perhaps 16-team tournament, etc.
I’d still like to see that one day, but will take this compacting of the U.S. Open Cup’s schedule; the earlier dates don’t look so bad either. Sure, the Superliga remains a complication (that’s in July, right?), but I want to scrap that one anyway. But the CONCACAF Champions League shouldn’t be a huge problem. So, yeah, let ‘er rip and see how it works.
BONUS: Almost forgot this bit…then again, that could be from a lack of inspiration. If you’ve ever seen Weebl’s stuff, it’s pretty clever. The Estate Agent isn’t their best, so far as I’m concerned, but it’s still good for a laugh. Oh, if you’re offended by non-human, animated nudity, or work with someone who might be, this is NSFW.