KC Current, NWSL announce new scheduling format

The 2023 NWSL Championship will be played Nov. 11, 2023.
The 2023 NWSL Championship will be played Nov. 11, 2023.(KPTV)
Published: Nov. 17, 2022 at 2:23 PM CST
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) - As the Kansas City Current get set for their third season, the National Women’s Soccer League announced plans Thursday for new competition framework for the 2023 campaign. The league’s 11th season will feature a 176-game schedule and will include a newly-formatted UKG NWSL Challenge Cup.

“Reaching our historic 10th season of play was a landmark moment for women’s professional soccer and the greater women’s sports community,” said NWSL Commissioner Jessica Berman. “The growth of the NWSL is a testament to the league’s incredible athletes as well as the steadfast support of its fans, owners and stakeholders.”

NWSL rules allow for club’s to have flexibility in determining when to begin their six-to-eight-week preseason camp. The camp can begin as early as Jan. 23 but no later than Feb. 6.

For the first time since its inception in 2020, the league announced the UKG NWSL Challenge Cup will run concurrently with the regular season. The league will hold a six-week tournament from April to September, featuring three groups of four teams playing double round-robin matches for a total of six games. After group play, four teams will play in the semifinals on Sept. 6 and the Challenge Cup Final on Sept. 9.

A 132-game regular season featuring a balanced 22-game schedule will be played over 22 weeks, eliminating mid-week matches. The league said in a release Thursday that choice was made to minimize schedule congestion for player safety and optimal performance.

In total, teams will play 28 matches between the regular season and the UKG NWSL Challenge Cup, with 14 games coming at home and 14 games on the road.

The full league schedule will be announced at a later date. The 2023 season will end with the NWSL Championship on Nov. 11, 2023.