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Wednesday, May 23, 2012
OPEN CUP: Fourth-round SuperClasico?

By Scott French

Ready for another Galaxy-Chivas USA showdown? If both clubs win their U.S. Open Cup openers next week, it will happen.


U.S. Soccer's fourth-round pairings are out, and the Galaxy and Chivas are set to meet June 5 at Home Depot Center, as long as both advance. Chivas faces Premier Development League power Ventura County Fusion in a third-round game Tuesday night at Ventura College, and the Galaxy meet the Carolina RailHawks, from the second-division North American Soccer League, in Cary, N.C.

If it's the Galaxy against the Fusion, it will be played at HDC. If Carolina beats L.A., the fourth-round game will be in Cary.

Major League Soccer clubs enter the country's oldest soccer competition -- the initial games were played in 1913 -- in the third round. Ventura County has won twice in overtime, ousting USL Pro side L.A. Blues on Tuesday evening, to advance to the final 32.

The Galaxy and Chivas have played once before in the Open Cup, with L.A. cruising to a 5-2 fourth-round victory at HDC's Track and Field Stadium en route to the 2005 title. Goal scorers for the Galaxy included Cobi Jones, Landon Donovan and Herculez Gomez.

The pairing was expected. Rather than a blind draw, U.S. Soccer regionalizes pairings to cut down on travel costs.

Thousand Oaks' Cal FC, a U.S. Adult Soccer Association side coached by Eric Wynalda, would play three-time defending champion Seattle Sounders in Tukwila, Wash., if it beats the Portland Timbers in the third round. No site has been determined if Cal FC and the Atlanta Silverbacks, who meet the Sounders next week, both pull off upsets.

Cal FC stunned the USL Pro's Wilmington Hammerheads, 4-0, in the second round.

The Sounders, whose three-year run has been aided by constant home games in the tournament, reached an agreement to move their match against the NASL's Silverbacks from Atlanta, where it was initially scheduled, to Tukwila, Wash., their second home. Real Salt Lake and the NASL's Minnesota Stars also agreed to move their match, from Blaine, Minn., to Rio Tinto Stadium.


Here are the fourth-round possibilities (all times Pacific):