NEW YORK COSMOS vs. NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
BELSON STADIUM • Jamaica, N.Y.
U.S. Open Cup • Round of 16
June 29, 2016 • 7:30pm ET (YouTube)
The 2016 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup has moved into the Fifth Round, with only two non-MLS teams remaining: NASL's Fort Lauderdale Strikers and New York Cosmos, the latter of whom host the New England Revolution on Wednesday at Belson Stadium on the campus of St. John's University in Queens, New York.
The Revolution, currently eighth in the Eastern Conference, advanced with a 1-0 extra-time victory against the Carolina RailHawks in Cary, North Carolina, one that earned Brad Knighton a look as the starting 'keeper in MLS play. After another sharp performance in a 2-1 victory over Vancouver Whitecaps FC on June 18, a third strong outing could further push entrenched starter Bobby Shuttleworth.
New England enters off a loss, though they had won the two games prior. Wednesday's game marks the second of five in a 15-day span for New England, running June 25 through July 9, a stretch that will test the Revolution's fitness and depth.
"We're about making sure we balance the group," head coach Jay Heaps told team website, RevolutionSoccer.net. "[We] try to put the best players on the field and in the best position to win, but make sure we're not overusing anybody."
"We all have to be ready," said midfielder Diego Fagundez. "[But] we know what each other can do."
The Cosmos, making their third straight appearance in the Round of 16, beat New York City FC, 1-0, on June 15 to advance. Currently awaiting their NASL Fall Season opener (vs. Ottawa Fury FC on July 2), the Cosmos finished the Spring Season in second place (6-0-4, 18 points). Tied on points with the Indy Eleven, the Cosmos' had four losses to the Eleven's none.
The winner of Wednesday's match will host the victor of New York Red Bulls and Philadelphia Union in a tournament quarterfinal during July.