Tuesday night starts the US Open Cup for 2011 where the Charleston Battery take on Regal F.C., an amateur team out of Houston, Texas. One of the oldest cup competitions in the world, it doesn't garner the attention it deserves from main stream media, but the potential for upsets and the underdog winning will keep most soccer fans interested.
Charleston has always taken the US Open Cup seriously, advancing to the finals in 2008 against DC United. A equally fought match that with some controversial calls during the match that the Battery loss 2-1. The Battery has been successful making it to the later stages of the knock out cup for many years.
This years first round opponent, Regal F.C. is a very organized amateur club out of Houston, Texas. looking at their roster they seem to have a lot of Mexican and Central American players on the team. We have been told that they have a hard work ethic and play and attractive style of soccer and they are excited to be playing in the fine facility the Battery have and against a professionally run club in a quality stadium.. With nothing to lose, we expect them to come out hard as making it to this point in the USOC is a big accomplishment for the team.
Charleston has been idle since the last minute 1-0 defeat in Harrisburg nearly 10 days ago. The boys have had a few day of rest and recuperation but have been training hard. A few of them said last week they didn't know exactly what to expect of Regal FC but that they take the US Open Cup serious and they want to win.
But who will take the field on Tuesday night? On one hand, time between competitive games gives the squad time to heal but it can also cause a squad to loss its edge and become "rusty". This match could allow Auggie to stretch the legs of the starters and have them ready to go for Friday nights match up against Dayton.
On the other hand, on paper the Battery should win this even if they don't play there starters. Most of the fringe players will be looking to impress and should put out a hard working performance trying to impress the Coach Anhaueser.
We at No Quarter believe we'll see something in the middle, a mix of starters and fringe players in the opening 45 minutes, followed by a few subs of fringe for starters and depending on score line, some of the starters to come off for a few other players.
As far as injuries, barring any mishaps at practice, Dugoni and Peverly are the only two that wont be available for the match.
The Baud will only be open on the West side as typical for early round USOC matches, so E10 will be in W10 for the match. Tickets are only $5 and season ticket holders get complementary tickets to this match which can be picked up at will call on game day or the office Monday or Tuesday.