This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
So how is it that Real Salt Lake has to go on the road to play FC Dallas in the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open Cup next month, rather than stay at home?Simple.It lost a bidding process.Teams must bid with U.S. Soccer to play host to U.S. Open Cup games, and they're free to offer whatever they want. Teams can promise to kick back a certain amount of ticket revenue to the federation, spotlight greater media coverage of the game or argue that it can draw more fans than its rivals.Thing is, it's a closed bidding process, so no team knows exactly what the others are pitching and nobody knows exactly which promises resonate most with the federation that awards the games.It's also hard to say whether going on the road in one round equates to a better chance of hosting games in later rounds. RSL might not have a great outlook, in that regard, considering that its potential semifinal opponents are the Los Angeles Galaxy and Seattle Sounders two teams with greater financial resources that presumably could put together more attractive bids.