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NEW YORK AND MEXICO CITY – FC Cincinnati learned Friday that Club Deportivo Guadalajara, “Chivas,” and Sporting Kansas City have been drawn as opponents in the Orange and Blue’s Leagues Cup 2023 group, Group 3 in the Central Region (Central 3), for the inaugural edition of the highly-anticipated competition.

Beginning in 2023, MLS and LIGA MX will pause their respective league seasons each summer and all 47 first division clubs in Canada, Mexico and the United States will compete in the World Cup-style tournament, which is an official Concacaf competition. The inaugural Leagues Cup will consist of 77 matches, kicking off on Friday, July 21, with the final taking place on Saturday, August 19.

The Leagues Cup 2023 groups are based on clubs' 2022 performance along with their geographic regions. The 15 groups are broken up into four regions: West, Central, South and East. Each region will have four groups, except the West, which will have three groups due to LAFC’s direct entrance in the Knockout Stage as defending MLS Cup Champions. LAFC, and LIGA MX champion Club de Fútbol Pachuca, earned byes directly into the Knockout Stage.

FC Cincinnati, by finishing in the top 16 in the 2022 MLS Supporters’ Shield rankings, is seeded and is set to host both their group stage games. The second seeded club in each group are LIGA MX clubs ranked 2-16 based on total points from Clausura 2022 and Apertura 2022 combined, opposite the MLS rankings (example: Liga MX #15 paired with MLS #2).

Sign up for more information HERE regarding tickets for Leagues Cup 2023.

The third club in each group, the remaining 13 MLS clubs and two remaining Liga MX sides, were placed in the groups, first based on their geographic region, and then based on their position in the final 2022 Supporters’ Shield standings (for MLS clubs).

FC Cincinnati finished 10th in the 2022 Supporters’ Shield rankings and is matched up with Chivas Guadalajara, who finished eighth based on total points from Clausura 2022 and Apertura 2022 combined in Liga MX last season. Sporting Kansas City finished 22nd in the 2022 Supporters’ Shield rankings.

FC Cincinnati’s only previous meeting against a Liga MX side came last September, also against Chivas, in the 2022 Leagues Cup Showcase, which was one of five Showcase matches to preview this summer’s tournament. The Orange and Blue defeated Chivas 3-1 at TQL Stadium on Sept. 21.

The Orange and Blue are 0-1-1 all-time against Sporting Kansas City, with the most recent matchup coming October 28, 2020, a 1-0 win for the visitors in FCC’s final home game at Nippert Stadium.

A full list of Leagues Cup 2023 groups are listed below.

Leagues Cup 2023 – Groups
LAFC and Pachuca advance directly to Knockout Stage Round of 32

West

  • West 1: Tigres UANL (No. 2 LIGA MX), Portland Timbers (No. 14 MLS), San Jose Earthquakes (No. 25 MLS)
  • West 2: Monterrey (No. 3 LIGA MX), Real Salt Lake (No. 13 MLS), Seattle Sounders FC (No. 20 MLS)
  • West 3: LA Galaxy (No. 7 MLS), Club Leon (No. 9 LIGA MX), Vancouver Whitecaps FC (No. 16 MLS)

Central

  • Central 1: América (No. 1 LIGA MX), Columbus Crew (No. 15 MLS), St. Louis CITY SC (No. 28 MLS)
  • Central 2: Puebla (No. 6 LIGA MX), Minnesota United FC (No. 10 MLS), Chicago Fire FC (No. 23 MLS)
  • Central 3: Chivas Guadalajara (No. 7 LIGA MX), FC Cincinnati (No. 9 MLS), Sporting Kansas City (No. 21 MLS)
  • Central 4: Nashville SC (No. 8 MLS), Toluca (No. 8 LIGA MX), Colorado Rapids (No. 17 MLS)

South

  • South 1: Austin FC (No. 3 MLS), Mazatlán FC (No. 13 LIGA MX), FC Juárez (No. 16 LIGA MX)
  • South 2: Santos Laguna (No. 4 LIGA MX), Orlando City SC (No. 12 MLS), Houston Dynamo FC (No. 24 MLS)
  • South 3: Cruz Azul (No. 5 LIGA MX), Inter Miami CF (No. 11 MLS), Atlanta United (No. 22 MLS)
  • South 4: FC Dallas (No. 6 MLS), Necaxa (No. 10 LIGA MX), Charlotte FC (No. 18 MLS)

East

  • East 1: Philadelphia Union (No. 1 MLS), Club Tijuana (No. 15 LIGA MX), Querétaro (No. 17 LIGA MX)
  • East 2: CF Montréal (No. 2 MLS), Pumas (No. 14 LIGA MX), D.C. United (No. 27 MLS)
  • East 3: New York City FC (No. 4 MLS), Atlas (No. 12 LIGA MX), Toronto FC (No. 26 MLS)
  • East 4: New York Red Bulls (No. 5 MLS), Atlético de San Luis (No. 11 LIGA MX), New England Revolution (No. 19 MLS)

Every team will play two matches in the Group Stage, with the top two teams from each group, as determined by points, advancing to the Knockout Stage Round of 32. No matches in the Leagues Cup Group Stage will end in a tie. If a game is tied after 90 minutes, the game will proceed to a penalty shootout. For tiebreakers and other competition items, the Leagues Cup 2023 Competition Guidelines will be published in the coming months.

The Leagues Cup 2023 bracket and schedule will be announced in the coming months.

Fans who purchase Half Season Ticket Packages will be able to choose one of the two group stage matches once the Leagues Cup schedule is announced. An FC Cincinnati ticketing representative will reach out to confirm specific dates at a later time. Choose from the Orange Package here and the Blue Package now. Fans looking for more information can contact a dedicated FC Cincinnati representative at (513) 977-5435 or e-mail tickets@fccincinnati.com.

2023 Season Tickets, which include all 17 regular season matches and both Leagues Cup Group Stage matches, are also on sale now at fccincinnati.com/tickets. 2023 Single Match Tickets will go on sale Thursday, Jan. 26 in an exclusive presale for Season Ticket Members. Single Match Tickets will go on sale to the general public Friday, Jan. 27.

Fans can currently place deposits on Group Tickets and Premium seating options for the 2023 season. More information on these experiences at TQL Stadium can be found at fccincinnati.com/tickets.

2023 marks the fifth season in MLS for FC Cincinnati. The Orange and Blue begin the season at home for the first time in club history on February 25 at TQL Stadium against Houston Dynamo FC. The full 2023 regular season schedule can be viewed HERE.

For up-to-the-minute information about FC Cincinnati, visit the team’s official website at fccincinnati.com, or follow the team on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at @FCCincinnati. Additionally, fans are encouraged to download the team’s official mobile app on the Apple App Store or Google Play for instant access to mobile tickets, team content and match notifications.