The format for the 101st edition of the tournament was announced Thursday. Eighty clubs from all levels of U.S. Soccer will participate, making it the largest field since MLS began participating in 1996.
Because those June 10-18 dates fall within a three-week break in the MLS schedule due to the FIFA World Cup in Brazil, it is possible that professional clubs could play on weekend dates for the first time.
The field includes 42 amateur sides and 39 professional clubs from MLS, USL Pro and the NASL, including defending champion D.C. United.
The competition will begin May 7 with eight amateur matches. The second round will be played May 14 and the third on May 28. After MLS teams join in the fourth round, the competition will continue with a fifth round June 24-25, the quarterfinals July 8-9, the semfinals Aug. 12-13 and the Final either Sept. 30 or Oct. 1.
The Sounders won the 2009, 2010 and 2011 tournaments, advanced to the final in 2012 and were eliminated in their first match last season at Tampa Bay.
And here’s a report from MLSsoccer.com.