From Day 1, the message at LAFC has been clear and concise. A Club born out of the desire to build a legacy in the heart of Los Angeles, there have already been milestones in the short few years of its existence.
On Wednesday, LAFC makes history once again, as it embarks on its first journey in the U.S. Open Cup. But for many LAFC players and staff, the match against Fresno FC at Banc of California Stadium will not be their first in the oldest cup competition in the country. On the contrary, LAFC has a rich 'history' in the Open Cup. Here's a look at some of that history:
A two-time Open Cup winner, in recent years having Benny on your side has meant lots of Open Cup success.
The midfielder was a part of the Sporting KC sides that won the 2015 and 2017 editions of the Open Cup. His assist on Daniel Salloi's goal in the final last year proved to be the game winner against the New York Red Bulls. Add to that a goal in 2015 that sent SKC to the final, and Feilhaber has been decisive for the the Open Cup winning sides two out of the past three seasons.
The current LAFC assistant coach won this competition three times as a player.
As a member of the Chicago Fire, the forward scored six times in 11 Open Cup matches. His play helped the team to titles in 1998, 2000, and 2003.
Bradley has a deep history in this competition both as a head coach and an assistant.
He won his first Open Cup in 1996 as a member of the D.C. United coaching staff, before going on to lead the Chicago Fire to an MLS and Open Cup double in 1998. He'd go on to raise the Open Cup one more time with the Fire in 2000, before leading the MetroStars to the 2003 final, eventually losing to his former club, the Chicago Fire.
Joining MLS in 2017 from the Ghana Premier League, Blessing didn't waste any time getting his first trophy.
Playing in the 2017 Sporting KC side that featured Benny Feilhaber, Blessing scored the opening goal of the 2017 final. SKC would go on to win the match thanks to the aforementioned assist from Feilhaber.
The current LAFC EVP of Soccer Operations and GM captured his only silverware in MLS in the Open Cup. Despite D.C. having one of its worst season in MLS, United went on a run to the Open Cup Final in 2013.
Lewis Neal scored the only goal between D.C. and Real Salt Lake in that final. Thorrington played a part in the build up, sending in a cross that would deflect to Neal for the finish just before halftime. The Open Cup win was United's third all-time.
A bit of trivia for you. What current LAFC player won an Open Cup as a teammate of a member of the LAFC technical staff? The answer: Dejan Jakovic.
Jakovic was part of the 2013 Open Cup winning D.C. United team with John Thorrington. Jakovic started and went all 90 minutes at center back in the final.
As a member of FC Dallas in 2016, Zimmerman collected the Supporters' Shield and US Open Cup trophies. He played the full 90 against the New England Revolution in a 4-2 victory in the 2016 final.
Like Ante Razov, Mike Sorber was a part of the Chicago Fire team coached by Bob Bradley that raised the 2000 Open Cup. In addition to capturing the Open Cup, Sorber, LAFC's Director of Soccer Operations, and the Fire reached the 2000 MLS Cup final.