On Tuesday night, FC Dallas opens play in the 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup against the Charlotte Eagles of USL Pro. Here’s more on the tournament in general and on FCD’s first opponent from Dallas coach Schellas Hyndman:
Discuss your general thoughts on the U.S. Open Cup and the meaning attached to it.
Hyndman: Well, it’s one of the things we talked about in our meeting today, was this is a fantastic event not just because it’s another competition. It’s also a situation where it’s named after our previous owner, Lamar Hunt. It’s the recognition our country’s given to a man that has done so much for soccer and it means a lot to our ownership and it means a lot to our club and our fans that we honor this opportunity. It’s also we get into a situation where you win the Open Cup, it gives you a direct route into CONCACAF [Champions League]. This is the first year they’ve gone away from a bidding system. Last three years, teams like Seattle would always bid high, hosted the game and giving themselves every opportunity to win. Now it’s a situation, it’s a little bit more even for everyone.
What do you know about the Charlotte Eagles?
Hyndman: I don’t know really that much about them. John Ellinger went out, got a chance to see them, scouted them when they played in El Paso last week I think. Our reports are basically they’re a team that are fighters. They’ve got a couple difference makers and obviously this game will be a big game for them because they’re playing inside an MLS complex and they want to be measured. So they’re very excited about it.
Charlotte features a local product, Scott Jones, who also spent some time with FCD. Did you ever recruit him to play for you at SMU and if so, what kind of player is he?
Hyndman: Yeah, he was always a decent player that we had our vision on and somebody we thought would be a good player to keep at home. He’s a solid player. He’s got an excellent work rate, good technical player. I think this is one of those games we’ll definitely see his best for all the home environment, all those types of things.