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Vancouver, Montreal to do battle on opening day of 2012 MLS season


The opening weekend of the 2012 MLS season will feature a Canadian derby.

The Vancouver Whitecaps will host the Montreal Impact at BC Place on March 10 as part of MLS First Kick, the league announced on Tuesday, as bits and pieces of next season's schedule begin to be released.

MLS' first match to be broadcast on the NBC Sports Network will showcase FC Dallas and the New York Red Bulls at Pizza Hut Park in a rematch of the 2011 postseason wildcard round.

Colorado, D.C. United, Los Angeles, San Jose and Seattle will also be hosting games on the opening weekend, leaving Columbus, New England, Toronto, Chicago, Real Salt Lake and Sporting Kansas City as their potential opponents. 

Here are the nationally televised matchups for the season's opening weekend:

March 10 – Vancouver Whitecaps vs. Montreal Impact, 6 p.m., TSN

March 11 – FC Dallas vs. New York Red Bulls, 3 p.m., NBC Sports Network; Chivas USA vs. Houston Dynamo, 7 p.m., Galavision.

March 12 – Portland Timbers vs. Philadelphia Union, 9:30 p.m., ESPN2/ESPN Deportes

Excited about these matchups to start the season?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Not having the opening game of the season on TV in the US is a very sour note to start the season on. I may not have watched it anyway but to not even have the option is laughable. Get your stuff together MLS/NBC this is a joke. Nevermind the fact that it is two Canadian teams playing when this is mostly an American league and America is by far the larger media market.

  2. It’s kind of unfortunate that we as supporters always feel this way. By that I mean, while we could see the upside and recognize it as a matchup of two good teams which ought to be a good game, we always focus on how MLS games appear to prospective fans.

    That being said, I agree, I wish it was somewhere else.

  3. Yes, like a limited 38 number of games on NBC SPORTS NETWORK aka Versus.

    But, NBC, the national broadcast station has 4 or 5 games this season yet to be announced.

  4. My beef isn’t so much with the the borrowing (or rather forced adoption) of British English “footballing” terminology, but I mostly agree on banning the verbiage; save for “nil.” I’m all for monosyllabic scorelines.

    While I’m on the topic again, I hate when American broadcasters (not presenters) pronounce derby as “darby.” I’m aware of its British pronunciation, but for godsakes, it sounds so insincere.

  5. It kind of is, or least a finalist or semifinalist.

    This year it was The Galaxy at Seattle, the most popular team for crowds at it’s games vs the team that was SUPPOSE to make the final out of the West and a rematch since LA took out Seattle last year…

    Last year I believe it was an exception, Seattle vs Philly so expansion vs 2nd year team after a successful expansion season.

    09 Seattle vs New York, the runners of from the previous year. Seattle is just the best to open with it looks like…

  6. This won’t be the 1st game, I doubt it. Seattle is a good bet for the actual “First Kick”

    A 2 or 1 pm game in Seattle makes sense. 5 or 4pm Eastern standard time…

    I want to know who Houston is going to get for it’s New Stadium’s Inaugural game?

    LA & NY are obvious choices for a good opponent…. Dallas, San Jose and Seattle are great too and Houston’s developed a bit of a rivalry with them recently do to it’s history with coming from SJ, proximity to and playoff battles vs Dallas as well as a rough few games vs Seattle in both MLS regular season, playoffs and I think US Open cup.. not sure about the last one tho point is they kind of have some heat between SEA v HOU

  7. Hey maybe they want to tackle a rough challenge right from the get go….

    And if FC Dallas does the same in putting forth the effort to sell out it’s home opener like it did last year than they should be fine.

    Dallas with a healthy rested team and getting Ferreira back hopefully should be strong again. I hope Fabian Castillo has a breakout season with a good 12+ goals

  8. Shows how little you know about the new broadcast deal.

    No MLS is not going to have games shown on NBC the national network, the one where you can watch Law & Order, Today, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno or Late Night with Jimmy Fallen….

    That will only happen about 4 or maybe at best 5 times as jonk said above^^

    But NBC Sports Network will have games on a weekly basis, the same way Fox Soccer Channel had 1 sometimes 2 games each weekend, unless they showed a midweek game and weekend game or just a midweek game. But those usually go to ESPN… especially if they’re good ones.

    NBC Sports Network is in every basic Cable/Satellite service for the most part. Is not tiered channel like FSC that you have to order the sports package or a much extended line up of channels in order to get it.

    Right now it’s called Versus or VS, in DirecTV I believe it’s 603 or 613 or something around there.

    NBC bought out Versus, and will be calling it, NBC Sports Network

  9. I am with you Mr. Barkley. If you are not English, ban the following words: nil, pitch, kit, derby, boots, and probably a lot of other words that make American soccer fans seem snotty and anglophilic. Instead, we have a perfectly good vocabulary (zero, feild, uniform, rivalry, cleats) to describe our game. The import of foreign words is my pet peeve in American soccer – we don’t need it and it inhibits the growth of our sport.

  10. MLS Matchday Live. Would be better for the league and fans if it were on broadcast or cable TV, but MDL is the best alternative.

  11. NBC Sports has a limited number of games and they get the Dallas game??? That franchise doesnt deserve that. Give to a team/fan base that represents.

  12. 2012 New Year’s Resolution:

    STOP calling it a derby if the teams’ cities are too far apart to drive or take public transport.

    We have a unique situation here in the US; I get that. Our country is huge and franchising doesn’t allow for real derbies, save for Chivas-Galaxy. But can we please come up with a better word?!

  13. Yep, showing games on a channel that almost all cable subscribers get is much much worse than airing them on a channel that barely anyone gets.

    Anyway, NBC will be showing like 4 or 5 games plus some national team games.

  14. By the time he scored against San Jose (in Houston mind you) he had been in Houston a couple years and brought the city 2 championships. Nevermind the fact that a team moving isn’t the same as a player just up and leaving for another team.

  15. Good God NBC. Why would you EVER want to televise a game from Dallas? Not exactly how you showcase your new product. I’m sure the dozens in attendance will be loud though

  16. Wait, wait. NBC Sports network?? I thought the idea behind the new deal was to get games directly on NBC. This sounds worse than Fox Soccer Channel or ESPN3.

  17. Ching will only do that if the Houston supporters treat him like the San Jose supporters treated him. The Quake fans were quite respectful at first, until they got their own team again.

    I think DeRo refused to celebrate his goal for Toronto at Houston.

  18. MTL Vancouver has got to be the longest distance derby in the world, if you can call it that.

    Why on earth would NBC choose/get a Dallas home game as their first game? The on field product will be good, but crowd and atmosphere will be weak – step it up Dallas!

  19. Go ‘Caps! Whip those Ching-thieves! (j/k)

    In all seriousness… should be a good game. Vancouver was one of the most entertaining squads last year despite their criminal underperformance. Montreal’s put together a sharp squad so far. Will watch if there’s access.


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