Less than a month off the heels of the MLS All-Star Game that saw the best MLS and Liga MX players face off, the two leagues and Concacaf announced the expansion of the Leagues Cup tournament.
Starting in 2023, the Leagues Cup tournament will pit all 47 teams in both leagues against each other. Both MLS and Liga MX will pause their regular season in order to conduct this annual, month-long tournament that is officially sanctioned by Concacaf.
What’s at stake? Beyond bragging rights of North America, three automatic Concacaf Champions League spots are up for grabs, with the tournament’s winner being placed directly in the CCL Round of 16.
The next evolution of Leagues Cup is just another indicator of the continued collaboration between MLS and Liga MX, the two biggest leagues in the region. Much has been written about what this will ultimately lead to – we even asked various industry stakeholders for their thoughts. But having the two biggest brands working hand-in-hand to become a larger player on the global stage is a good thing for fans and the growth of the game.
Given the growing importance and increased attention, one question we have is how the property will be sold to brands. Leagues Cup has become a sexier product, but will brands also be encouraged to buy into MLS? If that’s the case, how would partnerships with Liga MX factor into the equation? Would brands also be encouraged to attach themselves to the Mexican league here in the U.S.?
On the broadcast side, how does this property factor into the upcoming MLS negotiations. If the property is included in negotiations, surely the stateside Liga MX audience will be very attractive to linear and cable English-language networks and streaming providers.
All good questions that will be answered over the coming months. For more insight into the next evolution of Leagues Cup, here are a few informative articles to reference.