2023 Concacaf Champions League: Schedule, qualifiers & draw procedure

CCL trophy

The 2023 Concacaf Champions League will begin next March with Round of 16 games, the confederation announced Thursday.

Here’s a rundown of key information, including when the draw will occur, who has qualified thus far and what the competition’s future has in store.

When will games be held?

The 16-team tournament features two-legged matchups at each stage, as capped by the Final’s second leg on June 4. The overall winner will represent Concacaf at the 2023 FIFA Club World Cup.

  • Round of 16: March 7-9 (first legs) and March 14-16 (second legs)
  • Quarterfinals: April 4-6 (first legs) and April 11-13 (second legs)
  • Semifinals: April 25-27 (first legs) and May 2-4 (second legs)
  • Final: May 31 (first leg) and June 4 (second leg)

Who has qualified?

Fifteen of the 16 participating clubs have been confirmed, with the last locked in on Nov. 5 after MLS Cup is held. 

If the 2022 MLS Cup champion is a Canadian club OR a club that has already qualified for the 2023 CCL, then the slot will be awarded to Austin FC as the highest-ranked US-based club not already qualified according to the 2022 MLS Supporters’ Shield standings. 

Of note: Seattle Sounders FC, MLS’s first winner of the modern-day CCL format, hasn’t qualified for the 2023 CCL after winning in 2022, defeating Liga MX’s Pumas UANL in May.

Atlas (Mexico)
Apertura 2021 champs & Clausura 2022 champs
Tigres (Mexico)
Best ranked LIGA MX team on aggregate table
Leon (Mexico)
Apertura 2021 runners-up
Pachuca (Mexico)
Clausura 2022 runners-up
Orlando City (USA)
2022 US Open Cup champions
2022 MLS Supporters’ Shield winner
Philadelphia Union (USA)
2022 MLS Eastern Conference regular-season champs
2022 MLS Cup champion
Vancouver Whitecaps (Canada)
2022 Canadian Championship champs
Violette (Haiti)
2022 Concacaf Caribbean Club Championship champs
Alajuelense (Costa Rica)
2022 Concacaf League finalist
Olimpia (Honduras)
2022 Concacaf League finalist
Real España (Honduras)
2022 Concacaf League better ranked losing semi-finalists (3rd overall)
Motagua (Honduras)
2022 Concacaf League worse ranked losing semi-finalists (4th overall)
Alianza (El Salvador)
2022 Concacaf League best ranked losing quarter-finalists (5th overall)
Tauro (Panama)
2022 Concacaf League 2nd best ranked losing quarter-finalists (6th overall)

When is the draw?

The official draw is set for Nov. 7 in Miami, Florida and will be conducted using a double-blind system and four pots. 

Pots 1 and 2 will contain the spheres with the names of the 16 participating clubs, and Pots A and B will contain the spheres with the bracket positions for the round of 16.

CCL pots

The draw will begin by randomly selecting a sphere from Pot 2, followed by a sphere from Pot B to confirm the club’s round of 16 bracket position. The same process will apply for the remaining clubs in Pot 2, always drawing a club, followed by a bracket position from Pot B – and then the same process is followed for Pot 1 and Pot A.

At the end of the draw, each round of 16 matchup will feature one club from each pot and no more than one club from each country (per competition regulations, clubs from the same country cannot face each other in the Round of 16).

New format for 2024

The 2024 CCL, in concert with the reimagined Leagues Cup competition, will expand to include 27 clubs. They will compete in five rounds: Round 1, Round of 16, quarterfinals, semifinals and final.