Major League Soccer and Electronic Arts officially kick off eMLS 2023 presented by Coca-Cola Zero Sugar this week with the first of two eMLS League Series, which will determine the overall seeding and participation for the coveted eMLS Cup in March during SXSW and a piece of the largest prize pool in eMLS history – $100,000.
- eMLS Clubs will compete this week as part of the eMLS League Series 1 with the remote Online Qualifiers on January 24th – 25th before they all travel to NYC for In-Person Group Stage, and In-Person Brackets (which are not open to the general public).
- The top 12 Clubs will compete in the In-Person Brackets on Sunday (single elimination) with 4 automatically qualifying from the Online Qualifiers and 8 from the In-Person Group Stage (round robin) on Saturday. They will all be competing for a $25,000 prize pool – $10,000 for the winner, $5,000 for 2nd place, and $2,000 for 3rd and 4th.
Kacey “Kacee” Anderson, the first woman content creator to be signed to an eMLS club and arguably the most watched EA SPORTS FIFA female streamer in North America in 2021, will be the official eMLS season correspondent this year. Joining her will be eMLS host Faizal Khamisa, play-by-play announcer Dan Gaskin, commentator Mike Labelle, and sideline reporter Jillian Sakovits.
Emerging storylines include:
- Last year’s champion, Atlanta United’s Paulo Neto, makes another run at the eMLS cup against a much tougher roster of opponents this season.
- Niklas “NR7” Raseck joins St. Louis City SC as the first European FIFA player signed to an MLS club.
- Alan “AlanAvi” Avila is a former FC Dallas academy player, who unfortunately tore his ACL three times, but decided to use his knowledge of the game to dethrone Paulo this season.
- LAFC is represented by an import trade lane manager by day, star FIFA 23 player by night – Pablo “Pabs” Georgakopoulos.
- The top 2 finalists in the eMLS Cup qualify directly into the FIFA 23 Global Series Playoffs, while the top 3rd and 4th place finishers qualify for the FIFA 23 Global Series Play-Ins.
eMLS has fostered a winning culture both on and off the pitch since 2018, and the League continues to see annual increases in viewership and digital engagement. The 2023 season features a roster of notable partners, including Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, PlayStation, DoorDash, and JLab, along with Avant.