Sporting KC needs to finish Sacramento Republic’s US Open Cup “story,” says Russell

Sacramento Republic’s run to the semifinals of the US Open Cup has been considered one of the highlights of the competitors’s return.

The Open Cup, held for the primary time since 2019 resulting from the results of the coronavirus pandemic, is American soccer’s oldest nationwide competitors, based in 1914.

The final non-MLS staff to win the match was the Rochester Rhinos (now Rochester New York FC) in 1999. But this yr, the Sacramento Republic is doing its finest to cease that run, beating the LA Galaxy and San Jose Earthquakes to achieve the closing 4.

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Away within the closing are four-time winners Sporting Kansas City.

SKC has endured a torrid 2022 season up to now, sitting at the underside of the Western Conference, with the Cup offering much-needed comfort. Of course, star Johnny Russell hopes that is the tip of the road for this yr’s saga.

“Sacramento probably didn’t get much of a chance and they’ve had a great run,” Russell stated. “They are in the semi-finals on merit. They deserve to be there. The Cup is good for stories like that too. Hopefully this is where the story ends.”

Head coach Peter Vermes added: “It’s a team that aspires to be in Major League Soccer. They’ve built themselves up that way, and so we know what we’re up against. We’re playing in their place, so it’s a different difficulty.”

Some of SKC’s best moments have been within the Open Cup, profitable the title 4 occasions between 2004 and 2017.

Unfortunately for Russell, that run ended a yr earlier than he joined the membership, however that is his probability to write down one other chapter within the membership’s historical past books.

“It’s massive; it’s another opportunity to go and win a title,” stated the Scotland worldwide. “I’ve always enjoyed my whole career playing in cup competitions, I think there’s something a bit special about the cup. Here it’s no different.”

The winner of this match will face both Orlando City or New York Red Bulls within the closing.

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