Major League Soccer, MLS, is the name of the highest professional soccer league in the USA and Canada. MLS has been running since 1996 and the most successful team is Los Angeles Galaxy with five MLS Cup titles. Learn more about MLS and where you can watch all the games live on TV and stream by using Livesportsontv.com.
MLS TV- and Streaming Rights
Major League Soccer entered a significant and historic 10-year streaming rights deal with Apple in 2023. This deal is unique in the world of major professional sports in the US as it allows fans to stream every single MLS match through the Apple TV app without any local broadcast blackouts or restrictions, something that no other of the major US sports leagues can offer its viewers The service, available exclusively on the Apple TV app, includes not just the live matches but also additional content like a weekly live match whip-around show, game replays, highlights, analysis, and other original programming. The deal is valued at $2.5 billion over its lifetime,
A notable aspect of the current deal is the comprehensive coverage it offers. Fans around the world can access all MLS, Leagues Cup, and select MLS NEXT Pro and MLS NEXT matches in one place. Additionally, a broad selection of MLS and Leagues Cup matches, including some major matchups, will be available to Apple TV+ subscribers at no extra cost, and a limited number of matches will be available for free.
Livesportsontv.com provides you with the full MLS season schedule, including information about what time the live broadcast begins and a direct link to the correct TV- or streaming network. Wherever you are the dates and times will be automatically adjusted to your time zone making the TV schedule the perfect service for every sports fan. The service is free to use, and you can use it on your computer, phone, and tablet.
History of the MLS
Major League Soccer was founded in 1993 and ran its first season in 1996. As an exchange for letting the USA host the FIFA World Cup 1994, FIFA demanded that the host nation establish a professional soccer league so MLS was founded. Before 1996 the biggest teams in the USA and Canada competed in the North American Soccer League, NASL.
Soccer has always found it tough to compete against the more traditional sports in the USA and Canada like hockey, baseball, American football, and basketball. Low attendance at the games and difficulties in tying good players to the league are two of the problems MLS has been dealing with. More recently MLS has got a real upswing and both USA and Canada produce some world star players, who’ve also found their way into the European soccer leagues. Christian Pulisic in Chelsea and Alphonso Davies in Bayern Munich to mention a few.
Teams and League Format
29 teams are competing in the MLS, 26 from the USA and 3 from Canada. The teams are divided into two conferences: Western Conference with 12 teams and Eastern Conference with 14 teams. The MLS season is usually played from February to October. After the regular season, it’s time for the best teams to proceed into the Playoffs. The Playoffs are played in a knock-out format and take place in October before the MLS Cup is played in early November, the game where the champion is crowned.
- Eastern Conference: Atlanta United FC, Charlotte FC, Chicago Fire FC, FC Cincinnati, Columbus Crew, D.C. United, Inter Miami CF, CF Montréal, Nashville SC, New England Revolution, New York City FC, New York Red Bulls, Orlando City SC, Philadelphia Union, Toronto FC
- Western Conference: Austin FC, Colorado Rapids, FC Dallas, Houston Dynamo FC, LA Galaxy, Los Angeles FC, Minnesota United FC, Portland Timbers, Real Salt Lake, San Jose Earthquakes, Seattle Sounders FC, Sporting Kansas City, St. Louis City SC, Vancouver Whitecaps FC
MLS Cup is the name of the game that decides the winner of the MLS season. Since 2008 the trophy that has been handed out to the winning team is the Philip F. Anschutz Trophy. The game between the winner of the Western Conference and the winner of the Eastern Conference in November is played at a pre-determined venue before any Playoff teams are known.
Previous MLS Cup Champions:
- 2016: Seattle Sounder vs Toronto FC 0-0, BMO Field (Toronto FC won on penalties)
- 2017: Toronto FC vs Seattle Sounders 2-0, BMO Field
- 2018: Atlanta United FC vs Portland Timbers 2-0, Mercedes-Benz Stadium
- 2019: Seattle Sounders vs Toronto FC 3-1, CenturyLink Field
- 2020: Columbus Crew vs Seattle Sounders 3-0, Columbus Crew won. The game was played at the Mapfre Stadium, in Columbus, Ohio
- 2021: New York City FC vs Portland Timbers 1-1, New York City FC won on penalties 4-2. The game was played at Providence Park, in Portland, Oregon
- 2022: Los Angeles FC - Philadelphia Union 3-3, Los Angeles FC won on penalties 3-0. The final was played at Banc of California Stadium, in Los Angeles, California
- 2023: Columbus Crew vs Los Angeles FC 2-1 (Lower.com Field, Columbus, Ohio)
Los Angeles Galaxy has won the trophy five times which is more than any other team. Toronto FC and Seattle Sounders are the most successful teams in recent seasons with three final appearances in the last four seasons. The player who has won the MLS Cup most times is Landon Donovan with six trophies.
Player records in MLS
Most Goals Scored
- Chris Wondolowski 163 goals
- Landon Donovan 145 goals
- Jeff Cunningham 134 goals
- Jaime Moreno 133 goals
- Kei Kamara 130 goals
- Landon Donovan 136 assists
- Steve Ralston 135 assists
- Brad Davis 123 assists
- Carlos Valderrama 114 assists
- Preki 112 assists
- Nick Rimando 154
- Kevin Hartmann 112
- Joe Cannon 86
- Jon Busch 83
- Stefan Frei 80