MLS announces schedule, format tweak for summer tournament
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Major League Soccer finally unveiled Wednesday the schedule for its summer tournament, which kicks off July 8 in Orlando. In addition to revealing the fixtures, the league confirmed a change to the competition format.

All of the league's 26 teams will compete in the tournament, with each club playing three group stage matches. Sixteen teams will advance to the knockout stage.

The top two clubs in Group A, which features six teams, were initially slated to advance to the next round, but a late change will now see the group's top three sides move on.

The top two teams from each of the other five groups will also advance, while the remaining last-16 places will go to the three best teams that don't earn automatic qualification.

Inter Miami will take on hosts Orlando City in the opening match, followed by a meeting between Nashville SC and the Chicago Fire. The daily schedule - complete with broadcast details - can be found here.

The tournament will feature seven morning matches, each of which will kick off at 9 a.m. ET. The group stage will also boast a bevy of rivalry games, capped by the latest installment of El Trafico when LAFC clash with the LA Galaxy on July 18.

The knockout stage is scheduled to begin on July 25. The final will be played on Aug. 11.

Every group stage match will count toward the league's regular-season standings, while the tournament champion will earn a berth in the CONCACAF Champions League.

MLS, which halted the campaign in March after just two rounds of games, hopes to continue its regular season once the competition is completed.

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MLS announces schedule, format tweak for summer tournament
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