Major League Soccer will return to play on April 3. Clubs will play 34 matches during the 2021 season.
Teams can begin training on Feb. 22, six weeks before what the league is calling “MLS is Back” opening weekend.
“In accordance with MLS health and safety protocols, players will be required to quarantine and conduct individual trainings upon reporting back to their clubs,” MLS said in their press release.
The 2021 season, the league’s 26th, will include the introduction of a 27th club, Austin FC. With the addition of Austin FC to the Western Conference, there are now 13 teams in the West and 14 in the Eastern Conference.
Also, FC Cincinnati and Columbus Crew FC open new stadiums this year.
On top of the 34 regular season matches, the MLS season includes the MLS All-Star Game, the Campeones Cup, and Leagues Cup “during the late summer window.”
“MLS clubs also will participate in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, Canadian Championship and Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League in 2021,” per the release.
The league announced they are still working on plans for the three Canadian teams due to the travel restrictions between the U.S. and Canada.
Some important dates announced include Decision Day (Nov. 7), the beginning of the postseason (Nov. 19) and the MLS Cup (Dec. 11).
MLS will release their regular season schedule “in the coming weeks.”
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