For the tenth time in club history, Reading United will take part in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup. U.S. Soccer conducted the draw for the 2016 edition of the tournament earlier today and United were drawn to host the Atlanta Silverbacks. The match is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, May 11th, 7pm at Wilson High School's Gurski Stadium.
The Silverbacks, who play in the National Premier Soccer Leauge, earned an at-large bid to the 2016 U.S. Open Cup and will face a tough task as they make the long trek to face Reading.
Reading United are making their eighth consecutive appearance in the nation’s oldest soccer competition. Strong results in league play during the 2015 Premier Development League season allowed United to again qualify for the Open Cup.
With the announcement of Reading United’s first round opponent, club president Art Auchenbach said, “We are proud that we’re able to keep our record setting history alive for 2016. We look forward to our new coaching staff and players using the U.S. Open Cup as a big platform to set the tone for our 2016 PDL season. While we will face stiff competition from our NPSL foes, we fully expect Reading United to continue our history of success in this historic tournament.”
United have excelled in the competition’s opening round in recent years. Since 2012, the club has not lost a first round match.
In 2012, Ryan Finley’s 55th minute goal was the match winner as Reading saw off amateur powerhouse New York Greek-American Atlas by a 2-1 scoreline. Goals from future Major League Soccer draft picks Darius Madison and Steve Neumann combined with some timely saves by current Philadelphia Union goalkeeper John McCarthy helped lift Reading United to a 2-0 victory over FC Sonic Lehigh Valley in 2013. Madison was the catalyst for Reading in 2014, recording a goal and three assists as United defeated Greater Binghamton FC, 5-2, in a high scoring affair. Philadelphia Union academy product Brett Campbell scored the only goal in Reading’s tense 1-0 victory over the Maryland Bays in 2015.
Reading have posted a 5-9 record in the competition all-time. United’s deepest run in the Cup coincided with the competition’s 100th edition when the club advanced to the third round, where they fell to the eventual MLS Supporters Shield winners, the New York Red Bulls.
Reading United’s 2016 PDL campaign begins on Saturday, May 14th with a match at in-state rivals Lehigh Valley United. United kickoff the home schedule on Saturday, May 28th against the 2015 Eastern Conference Champions, New York Red Bulls U23.
ABOUT READING UNITED AC
Reading United A.C. is the Greater Reading area’s premier minor league soccer team. Led by the ownership group of Berks Professional Sports, Inc. the club was founded in 1995 as the Reading Rage. As the club entered its 15th season a name, logo, and color change was made to better feature the ties to the local and state community as well as the soccer goals of the team and its partners. Now in its twenty-first season, Reading United’s commitment to professional player development has produced over fifty players currently on the rosters of professional clubs throughout the United States and Europe. Reading United is the official Player Development Partner of Major League Soccer’s Philadelphia Union. For more information about Reading United AC, visit www.readingunitedac.com.