GPS Omens and Southie FC square off in 2016 US Open Cup qualifying at Lawrence Veterans Memorial Stadium in Lawrence, Mass.
The deadline, August 1, for amateur teams not in NPSL and PDL to apply for the US Open Cup is approaching. A quick rundown of the eligibility guidelines and procedures:
According to Section 202 of the 2017 US Open Cup Handbook, Open Division teams must play in a USSF Organization Member league with at least four teams and at least ten games played per year. Further, any team or league playing its first season must have started its league games by July 2 (30 days before the application deadline).
Any amateur team that meets those guidelines is welcome to apply to enter the Open Cup. However, teams that are registered as professional teams and share ownership with a professional team operating in a higher division (such as Minnesota United Reserves in the Premier League of America) would not be eligible.
But it is not enough to send USSF the $200 fee to enter the Open Cup by August 1. Teams are also required to, by August 5, send USSF their application to host the Qualifying games. A team that is drawn to host a qualifying game is required to do so. For Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states, these venues must be available for both September 10-11 and October 15-16, since that is when their first and second qualifying rounds will take place. Teams in all other states must secure venues for September 17-18 and October 22-23.
The field requirements include:
- Minimum size 100 yards by 65 yards
- Regulation-size goals and corner flags
- A safe playing surface as judged by the match referee
- Three soccer balls
Further, the home team must pay the referee fees of $320 per match.