23MLS_LeaguesCup_GroupStageAnnouncement

The 15 groups are now set for the reimagined and expanded Leagues Cup that begins in 2023, the official Concacaf competition where all 47 clubs – 18 from LIGA MX and 29 from MLS – will play in a World Cup-style tournament that qualifies three clubs for the 2024 Concacaf Champions League.

The inaugural edition of Leagues Cup will take place from July 21 to August 19, pausing league competition. All matches will air on MLS Season Pass on the Apple TV app*, while select games are on TelevisaUnivision, FOX Sports, TSN and RDS.

Teams with byes

Two teams have qualified directly into the Round of 32 for their performance last year:

  • LAFC: MLS Cup 2022 champion
  • Pachuca: LIGA MX champion; most combined points accumulated across the 2022 Clausura and Apertura seasons

Groups for Leagues Cup 2023

The remaining teams are divided into 15 groups across four regions – West, Central, South and East – based on 2022 performance and their geographic regions.

Each region will have four groups, except the West, which will have three groups due to LAFC’s entrance into the Knockout Stage. Pachuca will enter the Knockout Stage in the South.

[Leagues Cup] Group Stage Poster
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West

  • West 1: Tigres UANL (No. 2 LIGA MX), Portland Timbers (No. 14 MLS), San Jose Earthquakes (No. 25 MLS)
  • West 2: Monterrey (No. 3 LIGA MX), Real Salt Lake (No. 13 MLS), Seattle Sounders FC (No. 20 MLS)
  • West 3: LA Galaxy (No. 7 MLS), Club Leon (No. 9 LIGA MX), Vancouver Whitecaps FC (No. 16 MLS)

Central

  • Central 1: América (No. 1 LIGA MX), Columbus Crew (No. 15 MLS), St. Louis CITY SC (No. 28 MLS)
  • Central 2: Puebla (No. 6 LIGA MX), Minnesota United FC (No. 10 MLS), Chicago Fire FC (No. 23 MLS)
  • Central 3: Chivas Guadalajara (No. 7 LIGA MX), FC Cincinnati (No. 9 MLS), Sporting Kansas City (No. 21 MLS)
  • Central 4: Nashville SC (No. 8 MLS), Toluca (No. 8 LIGA MX), Colorado Rapids (No. 17 MLS)

South

  • South 1: Austin FC (No. 3 MLS), Mazatlán FC (No. 13 LIGA MX), FC Juárez (No. 16 LIGA MX)
  • South 2: Santos Laguna (No. 4 LIGA MX), Orlando City SC (No. 12 MLS), Houston Dynamo FC (No. 24 MLS)
  • South 3: Cruz Azul (No. 5 LIGA MX), Inter Miami CF (No. 11 MLS), Atlanta United (No. 22 MLS)
  • South 4: FC Dallas (No. 6 MLS), Necaxa (No. 10 LIGA MX), Charlotte FC (No. 18 MLS)

East

  • East 1: Philadelphia Union (No. 1 MLS), Club Tijuana (No. 15 LIGA MX), Querétaro (No. 17 LIGA MX)
  • East 2: CF Montréal (No. 2 MLS), Pumas (No. 14 LIGA MX), D.C. United (No. 27 MLS)
  • East 3: New York City FC (No. 4 MLS), Atlas (No. 12 LIGA MX), Toronto FC (No. 26 MLS)
  • East 4: New York Red Bulls (No. 5 MLS), Atlético de San Luis (No. 11 LIGA MX), New England Revolution (No. 19 MLS)

How groups were determined

MLS sorting (top 15): The top 15 MLS clubs – excluding the MLS Cup champion (LAFC) – were placed in their corresponding geographic region first, and then based on their position in the final 2022 Supporters’ Shield standings.

LIGA MX sorting (top 15): The top 15 LIGA MX teams, based on the combined Clausura 2022 and Apertura 2022 standings – excluding the LIGA MX champion (Pachuca) – were paired in reverse order with the top 15 MLS clubs.

Remaining seeds (MLS): Continuing with the competitive balance criteria, the remaining 13 MLS clubs were placed in the groups, again based first on their geographic region, and then based on their position in the final 2022 Supporters’ Shield standings.

Remaining seeds (LIGA MX): With MLS clubs placed into groups, the South and East regions have one remaining slot each. Based on the combined Clausura 2022 and Apertura 2022 standings, the last two remaining LIGA MX clubs – FC Juarez and Querétaro – were placed in the open positions in these two regions to complete the groups.

Leagues Cup: Key information to know

  • World Cup-style tournament held from July 21 to August 19
  • All 47 combined MLS and LIGA MX teams compete annually, pausing their respective league seasons each summer
  • 77 matches played across the US and Canada (hosted at MLS stadiums)
  • Leagues Cup champion, as well as the second and third-place finishers, qualify for the Concacaf Champions League
  • Every team will play two Group Stage matches in the Group Stage
  • Top two teams from each group, as determined by points, advance to the single-elimination Knockout Stage
  • No matches in the Leagues Cup Group Stage will end in a tie (decided by penalty shootout)
  • Regulation win earns 3 points; PK shootout win earns 2 points; PK shootout loss earns 1 point

2023 Leagues Cup Tickets

MLS club season ticket holders should contact their club representative for more information.

*This excludes Leagues Cup for viewers in Mexico

What is Leagues Cup 2023?