Major League Soccer (MLS) is a professional soccer league in the United States and Canada. It was founded in 1993 and began play in 1996 with ten teams. Since then, the league has expanded to 27 teams, with plans to expand to 30 in the coming years.
MLS operates on a single-entity structure, where the league owns all teams, and players are contracted to the league rather than individual teams. This structure is unique to MLS and is different from other soccer leagues around the world.
The league is divided into two conferences, the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference, with teams playing a 34-game regular season. The top seven teams from each conference qualify for the MLS Cup Playoffs, culminating in the MLS Cup final, which is held at a predetermined neutral site.
MLS has seen significant growth and investment in recent years, with the addition of new teams, expansion of existing stadiums, and the signing of high-profile players from around the world. The league has also been focused on growing the sport in the United States and Canada, with initiatives such as the creation of soccer-specific stadiums and the development of youth academies.