NEW YORK CITY AND MEXICO CITY (July 19, 2021) – Major League Soccer (MLS) and LIGA MX confirmed details for the 2021 Campeones Cup – the annual clash between the reigning MLS and Liga MX Champions. The Columbus Crew will host Cruz Azul on Wednesday, September 29 at the Crew’s brand-new stadium, Lower.com Field (8:00 p.m. ET on Univision, TUDN and ESPN2 in the U.S., TSN and TVA Sports in Canada, and Canal 5 in Mexico) in Columbus, OH, to decide which league takes the title.
Tickets for Campeones Cup will be announced in the coming weeks. Fans are encouraged to visit www.CampeonesCup.com to sign-up for the latest information and to be part of an exclusive presale opportunity.
Campeones Cup, together with Leagues Cup, are part of a larger partnership between the two most important soccer leagues in North America, MLS and LIGA MX, launched in 2018. The partnership is rooted not only in the on-field rivalry, designed to strengthen the sport in the region, but by a true spirit of collaboration off it, with a focus on sharing best practices and on being a force for positive change in the local communities of both leagues.
In this spirit, today, MLS and Liga MX also confirmed they will host a community service project in Columbus in partnership with the Ohio Hispanic Coalition to give back to the local community as part of Campeones Cup. Details of the event will be announced at a later date.
In its third edition, the 2021 Campeones Cup will feature the reigning MLS Cup champion Columbus Crew, against Cruz Azul, the winner of LIGA MX’s Campeón de Campeones, which was determined last night in Los Angeles. Cruz Azul defeated Club León 2-1 at Dignity Health Sports Park and moves on as the Liga MX representative in Campeones Cup. Club León will participate in Leagues Cup as previously announced.
Columbus Crew, the first club in MLS, has won two MLS Cups (2008, 2020), three Supporters’ Shields (2004, 2008, 2009) and one Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup (2002). The Crew most recently won the 2020 MLS Cup by defeating Seattle Sounders FC 3-0 (December 12), the largest margin of victory in MLS Cup history. On that night, midfielder Lucas Zelarayan scored two goals and provided one assist en route to winning MLS Cup MVP honors. The Crew is led by Head Coach Caleb Porter, a two-time MLS Cup winner (2015, 2020). In addition to 2020 MLS Newcomer of the Year Zelarayan, the Black & Gold roster includes Curacao Men’s National Team goalkeeper Eloy Room, 2020 MLS Best XI selection and two-time World Cup veteran Jonathan Mensah (2010, 2014), three-time MLS Cup winner Darlington Nagbe (2015, 2018, 2020), Trinidad and Tobago National Team midfielder Kevin Molino and U.S. Men’s National Team forward and two-time MLS Cup winner Gyasi Zardes (2014, 2020).
Cruz Azul will represent LIGA MX in Campeones Cup after a spectacular first half of 2021 in which it won its coveted ninth title in the history of the LIGA BBVA MX. Head Coach Juan Reynoso, who had also been champion as a player with the club (1997), has managed to pull together a great team, reaching 12 consecutive victories during the last League tournament and was the Leader in the regular season. The club defeated Santos Laguna during the grand final on the pitch of the Estadio Azteca. Cruz Azul has in its ranks the Uruguayan Jonathan Rodríguez, scoring champion of the 2020-2021 season and was named Best Player of the LIGA BBVA MX at the recent Balon de Oro awards ceremony. The team also counts on Jesús Corona and Luis Romo, named best goalkeeper and best defensive midfielder respectively, at the same gala.
Campeones Cup will be the first international sporting event to be played at Lower.com Field, which was inaugurated early July, in a city that has hosted some of the most iconic and important USA-Mexico matches in the history of the rivalry. The new world-class stadium has a capacity for over 20,000 supporters and includes a 220,000 square-foot canopy that will cover all supporters during the match, providing shelter from weather conditions throughout the season. The Nordecke, the stadium’s supporters’ section, has a 37-degree rake – the steepest in MLS – and has a capacity for 3,364 supporters, making it the second-largest supporters’ section in the League.
The two previous editions of Campeones Cup have been split, with MLS and LIGA MX claiming one title each, after Tigres UANL conquered Toronto FC in the inaugural 2018 edition, and Atlanta United defeated Club América 3-2 in the exciting 2019 match, played in front of over 40,000 fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
Campeones Cup wraps up five weeks of MLS vs. Liga MX matchups between August and September, including the Leagues Cup kicking off August 10 and the MLS All-Star Game presented by Target on August 25 that will pin the MLS All-Stars against Liga MX All-Stars.
Campeones Cup is sponsored by BODYARMOR, Procter & Gamble and Diageo.
Campeones Cup History
2021 Columbus Crew vs. Cruz Azul Lower.com Field, Columbus, OH
2019 Atlanta United 3, Club América 2 Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA
2018 Tigres UANL 3, Toronto FC 1 BMO Field, Toronto, Canada
About Major League Soccer
Headquartered in New York City, Major League Soccer -- celebrating its 26th Season in 2021 -- features 27 clubs throughout the United States and Canada and will add expansion teams in Charlotte and St. Louis in the next two years. For more information about MLS, visit www.MLSsoccer.com.
About Liga MX
Liga MX is Mexican soccer’s first division, comprised of 18 clubs throughout the country and headquartered in a sporting complex in Toluca, México. Visit www.LigaMX.net for more information.