MLS Season Pass from Apple TV is getting ready to hit a major milestone when it comes to the number of subscribers. Part of the growth is likely a credit to the arrival of Lionel Messi, who made his debut on the platform’s English-language broadcasts this past weekend.

According to the Sports Business Journal, MLS Season Pass is nearing 1 million subscribers. Apple has said on several occasions that it is pleased with the number of subscribers for its first year broadcasting the league. For example, a clause between Apple and MLS involving revenue sharing with players kicks in with a certain subscriber count. According to reports, the service neared that quantity about a month ago.

Now, though, MLS Season Pass is coming up on seven figures of subscribers to MLS Season Pass. However, this does not mean that each of those 1 million subscribers are paying customers. There are, and have been throughout the season, several ways to get MLS Season Pass for free. One of the major ones came through season ticket holders.

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There are an estimated 420,000 season ticket holders in Major League Soccer. Each of those gets MLS Season Pass for free as a bonus with their ticket. Then, T-Mobile users and LG Smart TV owners can get a season of MLS Season Pass for free. Additionally, there are free trials throughout the season, whether those be from clubs or other promotions. In summation, there is no clear number of how many of these are paying for MLS Season Pass.

MLS Season Pass subscribers growing

Apple remains mute on the actual subscriber count, as is standard among some streaming services. However, the Sports Business Journal did note that the quantity has vastly increased over the last month. In early June, MLS Season Pass pulled in around 700,000 subscribers. Again, there is no indication of how many of those are paying for the service. Still, by the end of July, reports indicate the service is close to 1 million.

The arrival of Lionel Messi, as well as the beginning of the Leagues Cup, could be drawing in record numbers. Messi’s influence is clear, at least that is the case on social media. His game-winning free kick against Cruz Azul has over 50 million views on the MLS official Twitter account.

PHOTO: IMAGO / Icon Sportswire

Guide to Major League Soccer

Here are some resources to help you get the most out of MLS Season Pass!
TV Schedule: All the info on where and when to watch every game
Season Pass FAQ: We answer your questions about MLS Season Pass
Sign up: Learn how to subscribe to MLS Season Pass
Commentators: Check out who's calling the action for the MLS season
Android users Tips for fans Android users on how to watch MLS Season Pass