It has been 42 years since the Greek Americans SC won their third straight US Open Cup title.
They were the third team to complete the trifecta, joining the Fall River Marksmen (1930-1932) and Stix Baer and Fuller (1933-1935) and no team has reached the accomplishment since.
On Tuesday night at CenturyLink Field, the Sounders FC will attempt to become the fourth on the list when they vie for their third consecutive Lamar Hunt US Open Cup against the Chicago Fire.
“To win three in a row is something that is special and unique and hasn’t been done in an awful long time,” head coach Sigi Schmid said. “It’s huge for the organization.”
With over 33,000 tickets already sold, the Sounders will surpass their previous record for attendance at an Open Cup final, which they set with 31,311 at the 2010 Cup final.
That support goes a long way in lifting the Sounders emotionally during the match.
“We never like to lose in front of our fans, regardless of the game. Not to mention that it’s a Cup final and there will be 30,000 plus there to see if we can get our hat trick of Open Cup wins,” goalkeeper and captain Kasey Keller said.
The Sounders remember the feeling of lifting the trophy in front of that record-setting crowd, parading their two Cups around the field and sharing that celebration with the people who support them week-in and week-out and are driven to repeat that feeling again on Tuesday.
“We hope to enjoy the game like those games the last two years when we won the trophy and we want to win another one,” said Fredy Montero, who has four goals in US Open Cup play in the last three years. “We want to give everything we have to win that game - to win that trophy.”
Keller finds a little more motivation, too. The 41-year-old goalkeeper is retiring after the season and knows no better way to go out than to take home every trophy available to him.
“That’s a hell of a way for me to be able to finish my career. It was a lot of fun last year and I think our fans remember that. Let’s hope that everybody’s ready to roll and we can put a great performance together,” he said. “We know we have a tough game ahead of ourselves, but we’d love to make that three in a row.”
The final is just around the corner and the Sounders have had little time to think about the match. After playing a hectic schedule that had them traveling over 9,000 miles in a nine-day stretch, playing three matches in Vancouver, Guatemala and New England.
With that venture now behind them, they have just one thing on their minds.
“To win three Open Cups is something that’s in our dreams,” Schmid said. “But we have to make our dreams a reality by working on Tuesday.”
Kickoff is set for 7 pm at CenturyLink Field. The game will be broadcast live nationally on Fox Soccer and locally on the radio on 97.3 KIRO FM.