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El Tráfico at the Rose Bowl, St. Louis City SC’s opener and more — MLS 2023 season schedule released

Major League Soccer opens a new season on Feb. 25 looking to ride a wave of interest from the Qatar World Cup as the league's 29th franchise St Louis SC makes its debut.

The first match of the 2023 campaign sees Nashville SC and MLS most valuable player Hany Mukhtar hosting New York City FC followed by the "El Tráfico" derby between MLS Cup champions Los Angeles FC and Los Angeles Galaxy at the Rose Bowl.

In between those two matches St Louis SC will play their first ever match when they visit Austin FC.

"I truly believe next year will be epic for St Louis with our inaugural Major League Soccer season providing a platform to showcase our city to soccer fans across the US, and beyond,” said St Louis City president and CEO Carolyn Kindle.

“We look forward to hosting some amazing soccer matches at CityPark, including our first home game against Charlotte on March 4th."

For the first time MLS and Mexico's Liga MX will shut down from July 15 to Aug. 10 with all 47 clubs taking part in the CONCACAF-sanctioned Leagues Cup.

MLS will also pause during the October and November FIFA international windows.

But clubs were given the option to play during the June and September international windows with 13 teams electing to do so.

The regular season finishes on Oct. 21 on 'Decision Day' when all teams will face intra-conference opponents and some games will have playoff spots and seedings on the line.

(Reporting by Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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