The road to opening day 2018 began for several teams across Major League Soccer on Monday morning, either kicking off preseason workouts or traveling to a warmer locale for the same.
Here’s a rundown of who’s getting started and what they’re up to.
The Five Stripes are aiming even higher after a remarkable debut season in MLS, and gathered at their home base in Marietta, Georgia to begin preseason on Monday.
Atlanta will remain at home for the week before departing for the first phase of their preseason in Orlando on Jan. 29.
The Fire are getting their preseason underway with media day in Chicago and will begin their work on the field on Tuesday.
The Rapids reported on Monday to Dick's Sporting Goods Park, where they will undergo physical and medical testing before traveling to Casa Grande Arizona from Jan. 24-Feb. 3, with scrimmages scheduled against Columbus Crew SC (Jan. 31) and Sporting KC (Feb. 3).
Columbus Crew SC
Columbus will begin training on Jan. 24 at their home base in Ohio before heading to Casa Grande, Arizona on Jan. 26, and then on to Hawaii for the Pacific Rim Cup on Feb. 6.
The Black-and-Red are gathering at RFK Stadium – which remains their training ground and headquarters until a proposed new facility is built in Loudoun County in Washington’s Northern Virginia suburbs in future years – to kick off preseason work on Monday. United will work out in their home surroundings this week before departing for Clearwater, Fla., on Sunday, where they will train leading up to their first scrimmage of the preseason, vs. Malmo FF at the IMG Academy on Feb. 8.
FCD kick off their preseason at their Toyota Stadium home on Monday, with morning activities followed by an afternoon training session. Their first competitive event of the preseason comes on Feb. 3, when they’ll visit lower-division side Chattanooga FC in Tennessee.
The Dynamo, fresh off a run to the Western Conference Championship in 2017, reported back to Houston on Monday, which was well-documented on the team's website.
The hotly-anticipated expansion side holds the first training session in its history mid-morning Pacific time on Monday, a closed practice on UCLA’s campus, which will serve as LAFC’s home field throughout the preseason before the team moves into its permanent training home at Cal State LA. They’ll meet Toronto FC, NYCFC, Vancouver and USL side Sacramento Republic over the next month.
After revealing some fresh threads for the new campaign, the Galaxy began their on-field preparations on Monday at the StubHub Center. The Galaxy's first preseason game is on Feb. 3 in Tucson, Arizona against Real Salt Lake.
The Impact have been busy this offseason, and took Monday to introduce a slew of new signings. Chief among them was freshly-minted Designated Player Saphir Taïder, but Zakaria Diallo, Raheem Edwards, Jeisson Vargas, Jukka Raitala, Clement Diop and Michael Petrasso were also among those welcomed to the City of Saints.
New England Revolution
While crews were still cleaning up the confetti from the Patriots' AFC Championship celebrations, the Revolution arrived in Foxborough on Monday to start their entrance physicals.
They'll head to Brandenton, Florida in the coming days ahead of three friendlies in the Sunshine State, including bouts with Swedish champs Malmo and USL's FC Cincinnati.
New York City FC
The Blue side of the Big Apple is flying south to Jacksonville, Florida on Monday morning. They'll train daily and play one scrimmage in the Sunshine State, a closed-door meeting with Jacksonville University on Jan. 31, before continuing preseason in California next month.
New York Red Bulls
RBNY also gathered their squad and jetted from New Jersey to Florida on Monday, where they will work out at the Oldsmar Sports Complex near Tampa, for the next two weeks. Scheduled scrimmages include a meeting with the University of South Florida (Jan. 27), the New England Revolution (Jan. 31) and the Philadelphia Union (Feb. 3).
Orlando City SC
While Cyle Larin's status remains up in the air, there were plenty of new faces to be found in the Lions' camp as it kicked off on Monday, perhaps none more notable than new Young DP Josue Colman and recently-acquired playmaker Sacha Kljestan. You can check the behind-the-scenes of Orlando players getting their physicals below, or hear from Colman, Dom Dwyer, and head coach Jason Kreis in their first media availabilities of the year.
After welcoming big-money signing David Accam to Philadelphia on Sunday, the Union got things underway on Monday. They'll head to Clearwater, Florida for preseason, with their first game against the New York Red Bulls set for Feb. 3. In the meantime, you can check out head coach Jim Curtin's thoughts on the upcoming season:
The Timbers will undergo physicals before beginning preseason training on Tuesday in Tucson, Arizona. In the meantime, new head coach Giovanni Savarese met with media at Providence Park to talk about the start of preseason and the roster-building task that lies ahead.
Real Salt Lake
RSL kicked off season preparations on Monday in Utah. They'll head to Tucson, Arizona for the first phase of preseason camp, with their first friendly set for Feb. 3
San Jose Earthquakes
The Quakes officially kick off preseason this week, but many members of the squad have already gathered in NorCal for informal workouts:
The team’s first formal event of preseason takes place on Saturday, when they’ll host season ticket-holders at an open training session featuring “the Black and Blue Scrimmage” on Saturday at Avaya Stadium.
The Sounders got preseason underway at the Starfire Sports training facility, and there was a sizable media turnout. Among those experiencing their very first preseason was new draft pick Alex Roldan, younger brother of Cristian:
Though preseason did not get underway until Monday, SKC head coach Peter Vermes and his squad met with local media on Saturday at Children's Mercy Park. They'll kick off preseason action in Arizona on Jan. 27 with a scrimmage against a group of Phoenix Rising FC trialists. In the meantime, you can catch Vermes' remarks to the media below:
The defending champs are back for more, and they kicked things off with a media day at the newly re-named BMO Training Ground, where a hold host of players and coaches spoke. Among the highlights was star man Sebastian Giovinco:
Whitecaps players reported for preseason on Monday at the National Soccer Development Centre in Vancouver with a total of 27 players in tow, including newcomers Anthony Blondell, Efrain Juarez and Kei Kamara. The group was bolstered by the presence of two training camp invitees – Canadian international defender David Edgar and Trinidadian youngster Isaiah Hudson – while defender Tim Parker (US national team), as well as Marco Bustos, Deybi Flores and Spencer Richey (on loan) were not present. The 'Caps will train in Vancouver until Jan. 31, then head to Hawaii for the Pacific Rim Cup.