Those of you at the cold and rainy stadium in St. Paul last spring know, the last time Minnesota faced Des Moines Menace is a match we’d rather all forget. In case you’d like to relive the sadness of crashing out of the US Open Cup, please feel free to watch the highlights below.
What is the US Open Cup?
The US Open Cup is a knockout tournament featuring 80 teams this year, competing for glory and the chance to lose to a Mexican team in the CONCACAF Champions League next year. It’s basically the NCAA March Madness tournament, if the March Madness tournament featured NBA teams as well.
Lower level teams love the Cup, because it gives them a chance to face off against bigger opponents and have the shot at upsetting the team.
Who Are The Des Moines Menace?
The Des Moines Menace are a amateur soccer club in Des Moines who have a wide variety of teams, including a USASA and a PDL team. It was the USASA team that qualified last fall, but expect many of the college PDL players to be featured on the team that Minnesota faces.
Some people were curious how a team could qualify with one set of players, and then play a different set of players in the tournament. So long as the players are declared to US Soccer before the game, and don’t play for another team during this year’s US Open Cup run, the team can have any player play with them.
The only issue for them would be if playing on the Des Moines Menace US Open Cup team would disqualify them for the PDL team or their College team due to professionals playing on the US Open Cup team, but I highly doubt they have any players they are paying.
Expect the team to feature a lot of young, college players. Hopefully, the professional players on Minnesota United FC will be able to exploit the youth
Records in the US Open Cup
Minnesota United FC( includes Stars statistics):
Overall(W-L-D): 3-3-0 | Home: 1-2-0 | vs. Amateur: 2-1-0
Des Moines Menace:
Overall: 9-7-1 (1-0 PKs) | Home: 5-3-1 (1-0 PKs) | vs. Amateur: 4-1-0
Head to head, Minnesota United FC and Des Moines Menace are 1-1-0, with each team winning away at their opponents home. Hopefully that streak will continue this week for Minnesota.
Who might start for Minnesota?
That’s a great question. With a big league matchup this weekend for Minnesota, expect some starters to sit. We will definitely see Dias, as he will be sitting this weekend with a red card. We might see Daley get a chance to redeem himself.
I also expect Watson, Polak and Prindham to get starts. Ibarra, as the motor of the offense, might get the start, as well as Jordan this week. Pitchkolan will likely get a start as well as the captain.
Fan favorite Takada will hopefully get a start as well, or at least playing time, if only so the traveling Dark Clouds can sing to him.
Should be a great game, and hopefully Minnesota will get to be the team that faces Sporting Kansas City in Kansas City on June 18th.