The inaugural edition of the Campeones Cup is upon us, as reigning MLS Cup champions Toronto FC face Liga MX's Campeon de Campeones holder Tigres UANL on Wednesday night at BMO Field (8:15 pm ET | Univision, ESPN2, TSN, TVA Sports).
In their disappointing 2018 following a historic 2017, TFC currently languish nine points below the playoff line in the Eastern Conference. But they have another chance to win a trophy against Tigres.
But... what is the Campeones Cup? Glad you asked.
Who plays in the Campeones Cup?
MLS Cup holders face the Campeon de Campeones winner.
Toronto defeated Seattle Sounders 2-0 to lift the cup after losing in the final the year prior. Tigres won the Apertura and defeated Clausura winners Santos Laguna 4-0 in the Campeon de Campeones, a one-off game at the StubHub Center, to earn their place.
The Campeones Cup is a yearly event that is part of a larger, multi-year collaboration between MLS and Liga MX which also includes a sharing of best business practices and a collaboration around social responsibility efforts to drive positive social change.
“This will be a fun rematch for us after an exciting series with Tigres in the Champions League,” said Toronto FC president Bill Manning in a team statement after the fixture was announced. “We believe that the Campeones Cup has the potential to become an important competition between MLS and Liga MX and are happy to host the first one at BMO Field."
What's at stake?
First and foremost, this beautiful trophy.
But also bragging rights and money. Tigres will be looking for revenge from the last time these sides faced each other (more on that below) while Toronto need all the victories they can take in 2018.
What kind of form are both teams in this season?
Toronto, as well publicized, have not been good this season. Recently, they've won just once in their last six.
Tigres are currently in 7th place in Liga MX Apertura play after eight games, going 4-3-1. They are seven points off leaders Cruz Azul.
Didn't TFC already play Tigres this year?
They did, in the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals. Toronto prevailed over two legs on away goals after the aggregate score ended 4-4.