2016 US Open Cup Round 5: Who should be TheCup.us Player of the Round?

Posted by | July 6, 2016

2016-usoc-potr-nominees-round-5-bigThe Fifth Round of the Lamar Hunt US Open Cup is complete and there were a number of outstanding individual performances.

TheCup.us Player of the Round is voted on by TheCup.us staff and a select panel from the North American Soccer Reporters. But if YOU had a vote, which player would you select?

Here are some of the top performances (in alphabetical order) from Round 5:

David Accam, F, Chicago Fire (MLS) 
Accam scored both goals in the 2-1 home win against the Columbus Crew (MLS). His first goal, in the 7th minute, was one of the best strikes of the tournament. At the edge of the box, Accam lost two defenders on a cutback before firing a laser past Crew goalkeeper Brad Stuver. His second goal may not have been as skillful but it was far from routine, as he had to place a Rodrigo Ramos cross past Stuver at a tight angle for the eventual game-winner.

Teal Bunbury, F, New England Revolution (MLS)
Bunbury scored a brace for a Revs team that had to come back from behind twice to pull out a 3-2 win on the road against the NASL’s New York Cosmos. His first goal was a beauty, beating Cosmos goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer from a tight angle in the 43rd minute. Bunbury created a few inches of space for himself with some stepovers before impressively firing it at just the right height to beat Maurer, who did manage to get a fingertip to it. Bunbury finished an impressive team play to win the game in the 83rd minute, after Zach Herivaux dispossessed Adam Moffat and Kei Kamara found the open Bunbury.

Fabian Castillo, M, FC Dallas (MLS)
Mauro Diaz and Maxi Urruti scored the goals for Dallas, but it was Castillo’s distribution, attacking initiative, and pace that won the day for FC Dallas. In no moment did that shine through more than in Mauro Diaz’s second-half equalizer, where Castillo rounded two Rapids players with one touch, before finding Diaz for the easy goal in Dallas’s 2-1 extra time win at home against the top-of-the-table Rapids.

Ilsinho, M, Philadelphia Union (MLS)
While Pontius’s finishes were good, Ilsinho’s services may have been even better. H2016-usoc-logo-724-widee provided the final ball on both Pontius goals, the first a through ball that snuck between four Red Bulls defenders, and the second was an impressive looping cross from close to the midfield stripe that had eyes for the goalscorer. They proved to be the difference in a 2-1 come-from-behind home win over the New York Red Bulls (MLS).

Mauro Manotas, F, Houston Dynamo (MLS)
Manotas scored the third and fourth US Open Cup goals of his career in a 3-1 win at home against Sporting Kansas City on Wednesday. Manotas’ deft volley from a corner kick opened the scoring for the Dynamo in the 7th minute, and he slid the 84th minute insurance goal past Alec Kann after a seemingly bungled first touch actually created space for himself against the two SKC centerbacks.

Raul Mendiola, F, LA Galaxy (MLS)
Mendiola connected on a cross from Emmanuel Boateng in the 5th minute to break the hearts of the 18,000 Portland supporters in attendance for the only goal in the Galaxy’s 1-0 win.

Tyler Miller, GK, Seattle Sounders (MLS)
Miller, starting only his third game for Seattle’s MLS team, carried an overmatched Sounders side into penalties, turning back a flurry of Real Salt Lake opportunities in regulation and extra time. He then won the match for the Sounders, stopping two well-hit penalties to secure the 4-1 shootout win on the road for Seattle.

PC, M, Fort Lauderdale Strikers (NASL)
Goalkeeper Diego Restrepo kept the Strikers in the away game against the favored Orlando City, but it was PC’s impressive, length-of-the-field run and strike that improbably won it for Fort Lauderdale. The Strikers are the last lower-division team left in the field, and they have PC’s weaving run that beat at least four Orlando City players and strike that ran past the diving, outstretched Earl Edwards.

Chris Pontius, F, Philadelphia Union (MLS)
Pontius scored two goals in six minutes for the home team to turn around a game that looked like a sure Red Bulls win at halftime. Pontius’s runs were deft, holding with the trapping Red Bulls line, and the finishes were calm, both coolly slotted past an oncoming Ryan Meara. The 2-1 win for Philadelphia was their second straight Open Cup victory over the Red Bulls.

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