Major League Soccer (MLS), the main professional soccer league in the United States and Canada, will be in its 26th season in 2021. Austin FC has joined the league as an expansion franchise for the 2021 season, bringing the total number of clubs to 27.

The season was initially slated to begin on April 3, rather than the usual late February or early March start, because of the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic. The start date was eventually moved out to April 16, making it the latest ever for an MLS season to begin.

On November 7, the regular season will come to an end. Due to the muddled nature of the Eastern and Western Conference standings, tiebreakers will most likely determine postseason spots and seeding for the 2021 MLS playoffs.



2021 MLS Cup Playoffs: Start date

The MLS Cup Playoffs, the post-season championship of Major League Soccer, the top soccer league in the United States and Canada, will be held for the 26th time in 2021. The tournament will conclude the regular season of Major League Soccer in 2021. On November 20, the competition will begin, and on December 11, the 2021 MLS Cup Final will take place.

There are a total of 14 teams who will compete in the playoffs (seven from East, seven from West). Every match is hosted by the team with the best record, and the conference's top seed receives a first-round bye and home-field advantage throughout. From then on out, it's only single-elimination knockouts.

The MLS 2021 playoffs will feature the top seven teams from each conference. Three rounds of single-elimination matches, each hosted by the higher seed, select the two conference champions who will progress to the MLS Cup, in a playoff structure similar to that of the NFL.