U.S. Open Cup will air on ESPN+

The Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup is the latest soccer competition that's moving to ESPN+, ESPN's direct-to-consumer sports streaming service.

U.S. Soccer and ESPN reached a four-year agreement to have all matches, beginning with the first round and through the final, air on ESPN+. The agreement gives ESPN+ rights in all languages.

The 2019 U.S. Open Cup kicks off May 7-8 with the first round featuring 38 amateur and Division III professional teams. The final six teams will be determined from Open Division qualifying this weekend. (Those matches won't air on ESPN+.)

Twenty-five Division II pro teams from the USL Championship will enter in the second round on May 14-15. The 21 U.S.-based MLS teams will enter in the fourth round on June 12.

“The U.S.Open Cup is America’s version of what is truly unique about soccer around the world -- knockout format club tournaments that invite the ‘Davids’ and the ‘Goliaths’ from all levels of the sport to compete against one another to determine the nation’s top team,” said Burke Magnus, ESPN's executive vice president, programming and scheduling. “This exciting property joins a robust collection of soccer’s best domestic cup competitions on ESPN+.”

The 2018 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final aired on ESPN2 and UDN. Earlier rounds were available on U.S. Soccer's YouTube channel.

4 comments about "U.S. Open Cup will air on ESPN+".
  1. Amateur Buddha, April 5, 2019 at 10:59 a.m.

    Putting games behind paywalls does not seem to be the way to broaden the viewership. On one hand, soccer is still in "discovery" mode here. On the other, there's plenty of soccer (even "better" ones) not behind paywalls (for now). All those USOC and MLS games on ESPN+ I'll never see, and therefore won't even miss. 

  2. John Soares, April 6, 2019 at 9:17 a.m.

    ab, you have a good point....but it's a step foward!?
    On the other side. ESPN+ is not available on some systems, even if you are willing to pay.
    All I can hope for is "baby steps". 

  3. Mark Buckley replied, April 6, 2019 at 9:21 a.m.

    ESPN+ is available to anyone with access to the internet.

  4. John Soares, April 6, 2019 at 11:59 a.m.

    Mark, thank you.
    While I was referring to more tipical TV. 
    IE: cable, satellite....
    It is still go information to have AND
    I did not know that:)

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