There is still plenty of soccer going on to keep us all entertained, with the days of feeling – in Europe at least – as if the sport took a three-month break in non-tournament summers long gone now that we can follow leagues and competitions from around the world at the click of a button.
When is the inaugural Leagues Cup?
MLS is in full swing and is about to steal the headlines more than ever following Inter Miami’s signing of Lionel Messi. The former Barcelona superstar is expected to make his debut against Mexican side Cruz Azul in the Leagues Cup, a new competition for clubs on both sides of the US-Mexico border that will run from Friday 21 July to Saturday 19 August.
How are MLS and Liga MX’s Apertura 2023 affected?
MLS will stop immediately before the Leagues Cup (on Sunday 16 July) and start up again just after it (on Monday 21 August), while Liga MX’s Apertura 2023 will take a break just three weeks after getting underway on Friday 30 June. Play will resume with matchday four after the Leagues Cup, although the exact date has yet to be determined.
Major international tournaments in 2023
At international level, the 2023 Gold Cup kicked off on Saturday and will run all the way through until Sunday 16 July, while the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, to be played in Australia and New Zealand, will take centre stage from Thursday 20 July to Sunday 20 August and is again expected to break records as the most watched women’s international tournament around globe.
When do Europe’s ‘top’ leagues start up in 2023/24?
In short, there will still be plenty of soccer for us to follow over the next few weeks, but when do some of Europe’s biggest and brightest stars return to competition action?
2023/24 Premier League
The new Premier League season will kick off on Friday 11 August, when champions Manchester City travel to newly-promoted Burnley. Will the Champions League winners win the Premier League for the sixth time in seven seasons? We’ll know for sure by Sunday 19 May 2024, which is the final weekend of the season.
LaLiga gets underway on that very same weekend and there is also expected to be action on Friday 11 August, although we still don’t know which games will be played when. Real Madrid kick off with a tough-looking trip to face Athletic Club, while Barcelona’s defence of their title sees them travel to the Spanish capital (more or less) to face Getafe. The LaLiga season will conclude on Sunday 26 May 2024.
2023/24 Serie A
No fixtures have been released as yet but we do know that the Serie A season will run from Sunday 20 August to Sunday 26 May 2024. The 2023/24 campaign will see the returns of top-flight regulars Cagliari and Genoa, while Frosinone are also back. 1992 European Cup runners-up Sampdoria, however, were relegated last season.
Napoli ran away with the title last season but, unusually for Europe’s top leagues in recent years, we’ve seen four different Serie A winners in the last four seasons.
Things couldn’t be different in Germany, with Bayern Munich’s monopoly of the Bundesliga continuing last season…but only just. Borussia Dortmund threw the title away in the last game 2022/23, allowing the Bavarians to win their 11th title in a row.
The new campaign will run from Friday 18 August to Saturday 18 May 2024, with fixtures set to be released on Friday 30 June.
2023/24 Ligue 1
Paris Saint-Germain somehow managed to win Ligue 1 last season despite seemingly losing every week for two months at the start of 2023. They ultimately hung on to win their ninth title in 11 years, just pipping Lens by a solitary point.
Who could be 2016/17′s Monaco or 2020/21′s Lille in 2023/24? The league drops from 20 to 18 teams, with Le Havre and Metz coming back up and four teams relegated. The season will begin on the weekend of Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 August, and finish on Saturday 18 May 2024.