Major League Soccer Restarts Season July 8th from ESPN Wide World of Sports at Disney World

Major League Soccer will restart the 2020 season at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World on July 8th.

What’s Happening:

  • Major League Soccer will restart the 2020 season on July 8th with all 26 clubs at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World.
  • ESPN Wide World of Sports will also be home to the NBA this summer.
  • The “MLS is Back Tournament” will feature 16 consecutive days of soccer during the group stage with a continuous schedule of matches.
  • Tournaments will be played without fans in the stands.
  • Games will be played with the following guidelines:
    • Group stage matches will count in the MLS regular season standings and the tournament winner will earn a spot in the 2021 Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League.
    • Each team will play three group stage matches, and those results will count in the 2020 MLS regular season standings.
    • After 16 consecutive days of group stage matches, the top two teams from each group along with the four best third-place finishers will move on to the knockout stage.
    • The knockout stage will include a Round-of-16, Quarterfinals, Semifinals, and the Championship match will take place on August 11.
    • Matches tied at the end of regulation in the knock-out phase will proceed directly to a penalty kick shootout.
  • Extensive medical protocols with regular testing will be implemented for the tournament. More information can be found here.
  • Some clubs will arrive in Orlando as early as June 24th to start training, while others will train in their home markets and arrive in Orlando no later than one week before their first match.
  • The 26 MLS teams will be drawn into one of six groups during a live draw that will take place Thursday, June 11th, at 3:30 pm ET.
  • MLS plans to continue its regular season with a revised schedule in home markets following the conclusion of the “MLS is Back Tournament.”

What They’re Saying:

  • Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Josh D’Amaro: “Sports have the power to unify and inspire, particularly during challenging times. And we’re looking forward to bringing this exciting sport back to millions of fans, while prioritizing the health and well-being of the players, coaches and support staff as well as our cast members.”
  • MLS Commissioner Don Garber: “We are pleased to team up with Disney to relaunch the 2020 MLS season and get back to playing soccer. The opportunity to have all 26 clubs in a controlled environment enables us to help protect the health of our players, coaches and staff as we return to play. We also recognize that the death of George Floyd and others has focused our country on issues of racial injustice, inequality and violence against black men and women. Together with our owners, players and staff, the League and its Clubs are deeply committed to creating meaningful and impactful programs to address these issues that have plagued our society for far too long.”

Important Dates

  • June 24: Teams begin arriving in Florida
  • July 8: MLS is Back Tournament group stage begins
  • July 25-28: Round-of-16
  • July 30- Aug. 1: Quarterfinals
  • August 5-6: Semifinals
  • August 11: MLS is Back TournamentFinal