NEW YORK -- The Philadelphia Union will start their first Major League Soccer season at the Seattle Sounders on March 25 in the MLS opener.
The New York Red Bulls will play their first league match at their new stadium two days later against the Chicago Fire.
Philadelphia, the league's 16th team, will play its first home match on April 10 against D.C. United. The teams will play at Lincoln Financial Field, home of the NFL's Eagles, because the Union's stadium in suburban Chester won't be ready.
New York moves next season to Red Bull Arena in nearby Harrison, N.J., after playing since the league's inception at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford. The new soccer-specific stadium has a capacity of 25,000, and will be more intimate than Giants Stadium, which holds about 79,000.
Other openers on March 27 are Toronto at Columbus, D.C. United at Kansas City, Houston at Dallas, Salt Lake at San Jose and New England at Los Angeles. Colorado starts at Chivas USA the following day.
Additional home openers are Chicago at Colorado, New England at D.C. United and Kansas City at Houston on April 3; and Toronto at New England, San Jose at Chicago and Seattle at Salt Lake on April 10. Toronto's home opener will be determined after a decision is made whether to install grass at BMO Field.
Each team will play 30 matches during the regular season, which ends Oct. 24. The MLS Cup will be Nov. 21.
No league games will be played during the first round of the World Cup, which runs from June 11-25, or during the semifinals (July 6-7) and final (July 11).
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press