Partnership between Liga MX and MLS continues to move forward
The Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber said that the coronavirus pandemic has not stopped the plans to merge both leagues in the near future.
It appears that nothing is going to stop the eventual partnership between the Liga MX and Major League Soccer. There are already a couple of tournaments that directly involve teams from both leagues and the idea is to continue on that path. The first step was the creation of the CONCACAF Champions League and that has improved the partnership between the two countries.
Then there was the creation of the Campeones Cup, an annual North American association football game contested between the winners of the MLS Cup and the winners of the Liga MX Campeón de Campeones. This competition was first played by the two leagues in 2018.
Slight setback due to the covid-19 pandemic
In the inaugural edition, Toronto FC lost against Tigres UANL on 19 September 2018 at the BMO Field. The next year Atlanta United became the first MLS team to win the Campeones Cup after defeating Club América 3-2 in 2019. Unfortunately due to the coronavirus pandemic the 2020 edition was canceled. The Seattle Sounders were due to host, but MLS and Liga MX announced that this cup will return in 2021.
“I don’t think that our partnership was affected by the pandemic. We have worked so hard and we continue to find the right way to deliver a value for fans and partners that could in many ways work with CONCACAF so that this region can stand toe-to-toe with the rest of the world. The only way to do that is to create meaningful competitions amongst it’s top clubs,” said the MLS Commissioner Don Garber in a press conference.
New president of the Liga MX, Mikel Arriola, spoke to The Athletic about the partnership they have with MLS. Arriola believes that it is growing stronger and said they are working alongside Don Garber to consolidate this partnership.
"We are the sixth league with the most fan attendance and we are the tenth in infrastructure in the world. We play roughly 600 games each semester and we can grow those numbers about 20 or 30 percent if we work alongside MLS. This will help everyone grow in the region, including the women's league," said Arriola.
"Our teams have a total value of $810 million and the MLS clubs are valued at roughly $700 million. This means that combined we have a higher value than teams that participate in the Copa Libertadores. So when we talked about working together is to improve the quality of our tournaments," he added.