CHICAGO (Sunday, October 20, 2002) – The battle for the 2002 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup crown will take place on Thursday, October 24 at 7 p.m. ET as Major League Soccer's Columbus Crew host the defending Open Cup champion Los Angeles Galaxy in this year's tournament final at Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. The championship match will be broadcast live on Fox Sports World.
In Thursday’s match, the Galaxy will play in their second championship game in less then a week having just captured their first MLS Cup after topping the New England Revolution 1-0 in sudden death overtime in Foxboro, Mass. this afternoon. The Galaxy are in the hunt for the “double” as they head into the 2002 Open Cup Final trying to become the first MLS squad to win MLS Cup and the Open Cup in the same year since the Chicago Fire did the “double” in 1998.
The U.S. Open Cup Final returns to Columbus, Ohio, and to Crew Stadium for the first time since 1999, when the A-League’s Rochester Raging Rhinos blanked the MLS’ Colorado Rapids 2-0 for the title. The match on October 24 in Columbus will mark the fourth time that the 89-year-old tournament final has been staged in the state of Ohio.
The Galaxy, who are also trying to become the first team since the New York Pancyprian-Freedoms of the Cosmopolitan Soccer League to win back-to-back U.S. Open Cup Championships (1982-1983), will be putting an eight-game Open Cup unbeaten streak on the line (matching the Chicago Fire’s streak from 2000-2001) while never losing a tournament game on the road (4-0-1).
In contrast, the Crew has never lost an Open Cup game on their home soil going 6-0-1 in seven all-time matches at Crew Stadium. The Crew also defeated the Galaxy in their only previous meeting in U.S. Open Cup action back on August 11, 1999 in Fullerton, Calif. Two goals by forward Brian McBride and one by midfielder Jason Farrell paced Columbus to a 3-1 quarterfinal victory.
Tickets for the 2002 Open Cup Final are on sale all Ticketmaster outlets in Ohio (614-431-3600) and surrounding states and the Columbus Crew Stadium ticket office (stadium ticket office open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET). Complete ticket information is available at ussoccer.com.
Dating back to 1914, the 89-year-old U.S. Open Cup is the oldest soccer cup competition in the United States and is also among the oldest in the world.
For an updated 2002 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Bracket please visit at (.pdf)
[NOTE TO MEDIA: MLS credentials will not be honored at the 2002 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup Final on October 24. Members of the media wishing to attend the event must contact the U.S. Soccer Communications Department at 312-808-1300.]