2018 MLS Schedule Reveal DL

Debut of LAFC, Expanded Coverage Highlight 2018 MLS Regular Season Schedule

 
Debut of LAFC, Intense Rivalries, Expanded Network Broadcast Coverage Highlight 2018 MLS Regular Season Schedule
 
Regular Season runs from March 3 – Oct. 28
Audi MLS Cup Playoffs to begin Oct. 31; MLS Cup set for Dec. 8
 
NEW YORK (January 4, 2018) – Highlighted by the inaugural season of Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC) and compelling matchups featured on national broadcasts by its partner networks, Major League Soccer today unveiled the 2018 regular season schedule for all 23 clubs.
 
Following four consecutive years of increased attendance, viewership and social media engagement, the 2018 match and broadcast schedule has been designed to drive continued growth for the league and deliver more matches to MLS fans in the U.S. and Canada. This year’s national broadcast schedule will showcase MLS's big events – Heineken Rivalry Week, the MLS All-Star Game presented by Target, Decision Day presented by AT&T – and includes more matches than ever before on the premier networks of the league’s partners: FOX, ESPN, the Univision Network, TSN, CTV and TVA Sports.
 
The 2018 MLS regular season opens on Saturday, March 3 and concludes with MLS Decision Day presented by AT&T on Sunday, Oct. 28. The Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs will begin on Wednesday, Oct. 31 and the 2018 MLS Cup is set for Saturday, Dec. 8.
 
CLICK HERE for the 2018 MLS Regular Season Schedule
 
Among the many highlights of this year’s schedule are:
 
A Dynamic Start Across National Network Partners: MLS Opening Weekend includes matches on four national broadcast partners. On Saturday, March 3, TSN has the home opener of defending MLS Cup champion Toronto FC against Columbus Crew SC, while Univision and Univision Deportes Network (UDN) present Houston Dynamo vs. Atlanta United. MLS Soccer Sunday returns on March 4 as ESPN will be in Seattle for LAFC’s first regular season match, while FS1 has a doubleheader of Sporting Kansas City-New York City FC, followed by LA Galaxy-Portland Timbers. In Canada, TSN and TVA Sports have Vancouver Whitecaps FC-Montreal Impact.
 
The Battle of Los Angeles Begins: Kicking off the new Southern California derby early, the first-ever match between five-time MLS Cup champion LA Galaxy and newcomer LAFC comes early in the season – March 31 at StubHub Center, in a game televised nationally on the FOX broadcast network and FOX Deportes. All three matches in the Los Angeles derby will be broadcast nationally, with the latter two games airing on ESPN and ESPN Deportes.
 
2016 and 2017 MLS Cup Finalists Meet Again: The highly-anticipated rematch featuring the competitors of the last two MLS Cups takes center stage on May 9 at BMO Field as defending champion Toronto FC hosts Seattle Sounders FC. The game will be televised nationally on TSN in Canada and FS1 and FOX Deportes in the U.S.
 
Audi Field Opens July 14: Audi Field, the new, 20,000-seat soccer stadium of D.C. United, will open on Saturday, July 14 when the club hosts Vancouver Whitecaps FC. 
 
MLS All-Star Game presented by Target Set for Aug. 1:The best in MLS will sparkle in one of the premier sporting venues in the world during the 2018 MLS All-Star Game presented by Target at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on Wednesday, Aug. 1. The midsummer showcase will be broadcast on ESPN, UniMás, UDN, TSN, TVA Sports and in more than 170 countries across the globe. The All-Stars’ opponent will be announced in the near future.
 
A Brief Break for World Cup: With more than two dozen MLS players representing their countries in the 2018 FIFA World Cup, MLS will have a nine-day hiatus during the tournament’s group phase between June 14-22.
 
Back in a Big Way, on FOX: When MLS returns to action after the brief World Cup hiatus, five MLS matches will be televised on FOX immediately after World Cup games in the captivating final weeks of the tournament. Three of these MLS on FOX broadcasts will be preceded by Round-of-16 matches in the World Cup, one by a World Cup quarterfinal. On Sunday, July 15, after the World Cup Final, the network will present Atlanta United-Seattle Sounders FC. FOX Sports, home of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, presents seven regular season MLS games on FOX this season, up from five in 2017.
 
FS1 Plans Include New York-New York: Fox Sports will broadcast 33 games – including both NYCFC-New York Red Bulls games this season from Yankee Stadium, on July 8 and Aug. 22. Matches on FOX Sports are primarily on Sundays and all are simulcast in Spanish on FOX Deportes and available on FOX Sports GO.
 
ESPN Returns with Prime Matchups: ESPN has 28 MLS regular season broadcasts this season (up from 25 in 2017). This includes an impressive stretch of six MLS matches on ESPN in 10 days between July 26 – Aug. 5. ESPN will have two games in the new LAFC-LA Galaxy rivalry, on July 26 and Aug. 24. Among ESPN’s prime time telecasts of MLS are a pair of matchups between rivals Atlanta United and Orlando City SC on Saturday, June 30 at 7 p.m. and Friday, Aug. 24 at 8 p.m. There will also be three games on ESPN2 this season. All matches on ESPN networks are simulcast in Spanish on ESPN Deportes and streamed live on the ESPN App.
 
More Saturday Afternoon Matches on Univision: MLS returns to Univision Deportes with 14 Saturday afternoon matches airing on the Univision Network throughout the season. UniMás will broadcast an additional 11 games, including the Cali Clasico at Stanford Stadium between the San Jose Earthquakes and LA Galaxy on Saturday, June 30, and a Heineken Rivalry Week showdown between Houston Dynamo and FC Dallas on Thursday, Aug. 23. UDN will simulcast all 25 regular season matches as well as the 2018 All-Star Game and MLS Cup.
 
Extensive Broadcast Coverage in Canada: TSN, Canada's Sports Leader, has a Friday Match Night from late March until early June, featuring at least one Canadian team in every game, and all matches played by Toronto FC and Vancouver Whitecaps FC. MLS on TSN coverage continues throughout the season with games primarily on Saturdays. In addition, CTV, Canada's No. 1 private broadcaster, will have nine Saturday afternoon games featuring Canadian teams from early March until mid-May – an increase from seven in 2017. All TSN broadcasts are also available on the TSN GO app.
 
MLS French-language network partner TVA Sports returns to cover all Montreal Impact games. TVA broadcasts are also available on the TVA Sports app.
 
Most Intense MLS Heineken Rivalry Week Ever: MLS Heineken Rivalry Week in 2018 contains the largest and most action-packed slate of matchups of rivals in league history. The schedule from Aug. 22-26 includes national broadcasts of major rivalry games including NYCFC-New York Red Bulls, LA Galaxy-LAFC, Toronto FC-Montreal Impact, Houston Dynamo-FC Dallas, Orlando City SC-Atlanta United and Portland Timbers-Seattle Sounders FC.
 
MLS Decision Day presented by AT&T is Sunday, Oct. 28: The final day of the regular season presents 11 matches all starting at 4:30 p.m. EST in the thrilling climax before the start of the Audi 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs. FS1 will have special coverage of Decision Day.
 
This Year’s Schedule Format: During the 2018 MLS regular season, each club will play 34 games, including 17 home games and 17 away games. Teams will face each of their conference opponents (10 in the East, 11 in the West) twice during the season with one game at home and one game away. Western Conference teams will play one additional intra-conference game and Eastern Conference teams will play two. All teams will face each non-conference opponent once. 
 
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