Champions of MLS and Liga MX to face off in new alliance
North America's Major League Soccer and Mexico's Liga MX today unveiled a partnership aimed at strengthening both leagues on the global stage.
The most significant outcome of the collaboration is the launch of the annual Campeones Cup, which will pit the reigning champions of Liga MX and MLS against each other.
The inaugual edition will be hosted by reigning MLS Cup champion Toronto FC on 19 September, with Liga MX’s representative to be decided in mid-July in a Campeon de Campeones match-up between its two tournament champions Apertura (Tigres UANL) and Clausura (to be played in May).
In addition, the two leagues will work on potential additional competitions, while a future MLS All-Star Game will feature the best players from Liga MX.
The collaboration comes as USA, Canada and Mexico prepare to submit a joint bid to Fifa to stage the 2026 World Cup. The trio face competition from Morocco, with bids due in this Friday.
Don Garber, commissioner of MLS, said: “Together, we have a vision to elevate the popularity of our game to even higher levels in North America. We are excited to have the MLS champion take on Liga MX’s top club in the Campeones Cup this year and build further programmes in the years to come.”
Enrique Bonilla, Liga MX president, added: “For Mexican soccer, accepting the invitation to this project is a fantastic opportunity to meet our vital goals with a long-term vision. First, it will allow us to grow closer to our fans in the United States and Canada, who are passionate about their Liga MX clubs. Second, it establishes a strategic alliance between the two leagues to exchange experiences and implement best practices throughout both organizations, which will organically assist the growth of soccer in the region.”
The two leagues previously came together in the North American SuperLiga, a tournament which ran from 2007 to 2010. It was sanctioned by Concacaf, soccer's governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean, but was dispensed with as the confederation switched its focus to the Concacaf Champions League.