For the second consecutive year, a total of 42 teams – 26 professional and 16 amateur – will compete in the 2006 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup when it kicks off in June.
The U.S. Open Cup, which is recognized as U.S. Soccer’s National Championship, is an annual competition open to all amateur and professional soccer teams affiliated with U.S. Soccer.
Qualifying is slated to be completed by May 29, with the pairings announcement expected later that week. The defending champion Los Angeles Galaxy enter the tournament on Aug. 2 in the fourth round. The semifinals will be played Sept. 6, with the final being played on Sept. 27. The Raleigh Elite will have a chance to qualify as one of eight Premier Development League teams who will participate. The top two teams from each PDL conference based on the results of four pre-designated league games will advance to the tournament. The second-place group finishers from the Eastern and Central Conferences will be drawn to play in the qualifying round against two USASA regional qualifiers. The remaining six will enter in the first round. The specific qualifying games on the Elite's 2006 Schedule have not yet been designated.