MLS Cup 2023: Columbus Crew vs. defending champions LAFC


The matchup is set.

Eastern Conference champions Columbus Crew (No. 3) will host Western Conference champions LAFC (No. 3) at Field on Dec. 9 for MLS Cup presented by Audi.

  • Date: Saturday, Dec. 9
  • Time: 4 pm ET/1 pm PT
  • Where: Field | Columbus, Ohio
  • Watch: Apple TV - Free; FOX, FOX Deportes; TSN/RDS
  • Round One: 2-1 series win vs. Atlanta United
  • Conference Semifinal: 2-0 win (extra time) at Orlando City SC
  • Conference Final: 3-2 win (extra time) at FC Cincinnati

Columbus advanced via a Hell is Real matchup for the ages, winning 3-2 in extra time Saturday evening at TQL Stadium over arch-rival Cincy. Second-half substitutes Julian Gressel and Christian Ramirez sparked the comeback, canceling out a 2-0 hole when the latter scored a 115th-minute game-winner.

The Crew, who hired head coach Wilfried Nancy away from CF Montréal nearly a year ago, continue to be led by striker Cucho Hernández. The Colombian international has 4g/2a in the playoffs, and now Columbus are one game away from a third-ever MLS Cup title after winning in both 2008 and 2020.

  • Round One: 2-0 series win vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC
  • Conference Semifinal: 1-0 win at Seattle Sounders FC
  • Conference Final: 2-0 win vs. Houston Dynamo FC

LAFC have gone back-to-back as West champions, earning a comfortable 2-0 win over Houston to punch their MLS Cup ticket. While forward Dénis Bouanga was held scoreless for the first time in seven games, he and fellow DP Carlos Vela posed constant threats to the Dynamo's backline.

The Black & Gold, who play their 53rd game across all competitions next weekend, are one match away from becoming the first repeat winners since the 2011-12 LA Galaxy. If that's achieved, they will also book a 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup spot.