NEW YORK (Wednesday, February 23, 2011) – Today Major League Soccer announced the format for the 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs. For a visual representation of the playoffs, go to www.MLSsoccer.com.
Ten clubs will qualify for the 2011 MLS Cup Playoffs:
- The top three finishers in each conference, based on regular season points (six automatic berths)
- The next best four clubs based on regular season points, irrespective of conference (four wild cards)
- The four wild cards will play single elimination games against each other, with higher seeds hosting (1 vs. 4; 2 vs. 3). These play-in games are part of the MLS Cup Playoffs.
- After the two play-in games conclude, the lowest remaining seed will face the Supporters’ Shield winner in the Conference Semifinals; the other will face the No. 1 seed in the opposite conference from the Supporters’ Shield winner.
The four Conference Semifinals will be decided by two-game aggregate series, with each club hosting one game. The two Conference Championships will be single games hosted by the higher seed. MLS Cup will again be a single championship match hosted at a predetermined site to be announced at a later date.
The 2011 MLS regular season concludes Oct. 23. The dates for the MLS Cup Playoffs and MLS Cup will be announced at a later date.