Wednesday was a big news day for soccer fans in North America, Central America and the Caribbean, but not as big for fans of logos.
Two big announcements were made on Wednesday, the first being the revamping of the Leagues Cup tournament between Major League Soccer (MLS) and Liga MX. Beginning in 2023, the tournament will expand to include all MLS and Liga MX teams, with both leagues pausing regular season play for a month to take part. The winner will automatically qualify for the Concacaf Champions League (CCL) round of 16, while the second- and third-place teams get berths in the CCL opening round.
Despite the new format, the competition’s logos remain the same. They depict the two bowls of the Leagues Cup trophy, with “LEAGUES CUP” text either to the right or in between the bowls.
Speaking of the CCL, Concacaf also announced on Wednesday that, beginning in 2024, the competition will expand to 27 teams. Twenty-two teams will compete in the opening round, while five others will get byes into the round of 16.
Like the Leagues Cup, though, the announcement of the revamped CCL format did not come with a new logo. It remains an illustration of the CCL trophy on a black shield, with the competition name at the bottom. In recent years, the logo has also had a red border and a ribbon with the logo of presenting sponsor Scotiabank.
The opening round of the expanded CCL will include:
- 5 Liga MX clubs;
- 4 MLS clubs;
- 2 Canadian Premier League clubs;
- 2 Leagues Cup clubs (2nd and 3rd place);
- the U.S. Open Cup winner;
- the Canadian Championship winner;
- 5 Copa Centroamericana teams (2nd place, two losing semifinalists and two play-in winners); and
- 2 Caribbean Club Championship teams (2nd and 3rd place).
Teams receiving byes into the round of 16 include:
- the Liga MX winner;
- the MLS Cup winner;
- the Leagues Cup winner;
- the Copa Centroamericana winner; and
- the Caribbean Club Championship winner.
The CCL began in 1962 as the Concacaf Champions Cup. It has been won by a total of 28 clubs, 13 of which have won it multiple times. In 1978, three clubs were all declared champions after the final part of the tournament was cancelled due to administrative problems.
The Leagues Cup began in 2019 as a tournament with four teams from MLS and four teams from Liga MX. The inaugural edition was won by Cruz Azul of Liga MX. The 2020 edition was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2021 edition was meant to include 16 teams, but was scaled back to eight teams due to COVID-19. The final takes place on Sept. 22 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, with MLS’s Seattle Sounders taking on Liga MX’s Club Léon.
Since 2018, MLS and Liga MX have also held the annual Campeones Cup, a match between the champions of the two leagues. The 2021 edition will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 29, when the Columbus Crew host Cruz Azul at Lower.com Field in Columbus. The two leagues also squared off in the 2021 MLS All-Star Game, held at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles.