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MLS unveils 25th season activation plans

MLS commissioner Don Garber (Credit: MLS)

Major League Soccer has unveiled plans to celebrate its 25th season in 2020, including unique experiences, marquee events, new content and innovative programming.

The efforts are designed to celebrate the league’s past and focus on its future potential.

“Our 25th season will celebrate our rich history by honoring the countless people behind the growth of our League and reflecting upon many of the memorable moments in our history,” said MLS commissioner Don Garber. “During this season-long celebration, we’ll also focus on our exciting future as we continue on our path to become one of the top leagues in the world.”

The initiatives include a jersey reveal at New York City’s Fashion Week on February 5, in which celebrity fans and MLS legends will model kits. Houston Texans All-Pro wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins will model for Houston Dynamo, while actor and director Colin Hanks will represent LAFC. The adidas jerseys will be revealed virtually across EA Sports Fifa channels following the unveiling.

MLS and Bodyarmor sports drink will hold a media event and youth soccer skills challenge at LAFC’s Banc of California Stadium on January 15. The event will feature NBA legend and Bodyarmor investor Kobe Bryant, MLS players and executives.

There will also be a wide-ranging content offering, including a video series, feature films, and fan-engagement programming throughout the 2020 season. This will include a feature-length documentary about the birth and growth of MLS during its first 25 years; The 25 Greatest, a special, year-long content and fan-engagement program to determine the top 25 players from the first 25 years of MLS; a competition to determine the Greatest Goal in MLS; and Legacy, a 12-part long-form editorial series exploring some of the lesser-known moments and personalities that have laid the foundation for MLS’s next 25 years.

In partnership with Mitchell & Ness and New Era, MLS will release the “Since 96 Collection,” which will feature feature retro gear from the Colorado Rapids, Columbus Crew, FC Dallas (Burn), D.C. United, Sporting Kansas City (Kansas City Wiz), LA Galaxy, Portland Timbers, New England Revolution, San Jose Earthquakes (Clash), Seattle Sounders FC, and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC (Eighty-Sixers).

It was announced in December that MLS will have the most comprehensive US broadcast network schedule in league history in 2020. This includes an all-time high 46 network broadcast windows across ABC, Fox and Univision and UniMás, in the United States, complemented by eight matches broadcast on CTV in Canada. By contrast, MLS had zero games on ABC, Fox, Univision and CTV in 2015.

Additional programming, events and initiatives will be unveiled throughout the season.