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Philadelphia Union draws Tijuana and Querétaro in group play for Leagues Cup

Union will host both games in the group stage of the competition being contested July 21-August 19

Carl Gulbish

The Philadelphia Union will face Club Tijuana and Querétaro in the group stage of the Leagues Cup this season.

The full group draw for the re-formatted competition between MLS and Liga MX was announced on Friday.

The two champions — LAFC and Pachuca — will get byes out of the group stage while the Union and Austin FC both drew two Liga MX opponents. Querétaro was the lowest ranked Liga MX team.

The Leagues Cup 2023 groups are based on clubs’ 2022 performance along with their geographic regions. The 15 groups will be 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 entrance in the Knockout Stage. Pachuca will enter the Knockout Stage in the South, opposite side of the bracket from the MLS Cup Champion and opposite quadrant from the top MLS seeded club based on the final 2022 Supporters’ Shield standings. Since LAFC won the 2022 Supporters’ Shield, the club in the opposite quadrant will be the team that finished second – the Philadelphia Union, who will be in Group 1 in the East Region (East 1).

The Leagues Cup will be held July 21 to August 19 in the U.S. MLS play will be paused during the competition.

Though it wasn’t part of the announcement, Union head coach Jim Curtin did confirm on Friday that the games will be played at Subaru Park and not a neutral location. This will of course be a disadvantage to the Liga MX teams that will have to travel. Tijuana is 2,700 miles from Chester and Querétaro City is 2,400 miles away.