The Unofficial Major League Socer (MLS) Championship is a fan-created award that is passed between teams of the MLS, much like professional wrestling championship titles are handed down. The entire first season of MLS was treated as a battle royale between all MLS teams, with the first winner of the MLS Cup, DC United, being crowned the innagurial Unofficial MLS Champion. The current title holder is Toronto FC.
How the belt changes handsEdit
The title can only change hands on the pitch (or if the team ceases to exist in Major League Soccer). If the winner of championship does not qualify for the playoffs, they will retain the title until the next season except as noted below.
- If the curent title holder loses their membership in MLS, the title will be held vacant until the next MLS Cup Champion can be crowned. In the event that next MLS Cup is played in the same season in which team folds (ie, club announces they will cease play at conclusion of season, and fail to miss playoffs), that season's MLS Cup will be used to determine the new holder of Unofficial MLS Championship.
- If the MLS Cup Champion is the team to lose membership (team folds in offseason), the entire next season will be held under Battle Royale rules with the winner of the next MLS Cup becoming the new Unofficial MLS Championship holder.
The title will not be contested in non-MLS play. If the current title holder has a match against a non-MLS opponent (ie, international friendly, US Open Cup, Canadian Championship, CONCACAF Champions League, etc.), the match will be treated as a non-title bout. Furthermore, the title cannot change hands outside of league play. If the current title holder has a match for the US Open Cup, Canadian Championship, CONCACAF Champion's League, etc.against an MLS opponent, the match will be considered a non-title bout.
While a non-issue for the early years of MLS, the belt cannot change hands if the match ends in a draw. This is akin to a no-contest/no-decision in professional wrestling/boxing. If the title holder draws their match, they retain the title. In other words, the title must be won/lost.
For the full match-by-match breakdown click on a year below