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Baby, Love Cup has dropped in Pokémon Go! Returning to GO Battle League from February 9, 2023, at 1pm PT to February 16, 2023, this tournament format is one of the mobile game’s most special disciplines.

Love Cup has a maximum competition points (CP) limit of 1,500 CP, similar to the Great League. However, you may only field pink and red Pokémon in this format (orange ones seem to count as red), which is absolutely hilarious and usually makes for a very different experience than any other PvP event in the game.

We’ve summarized the best Pokémon for Love Cup in Pokémon Go in this guide, which hopefully saves you some time researching. Go out on a Pokémon battle date or something.

The ranking is based on statistics and simulations provided by

Pokémon Go Love Cup: Best Leads

These Pokémon aggressively apply pressure on your opponent right from the start of a duel and can survive even tough battles for a long time – they are perfect to open a match up, enabling you to score an early knockout or set up a strong counter play.

  1. Charizard(S) (Wing Attack, Dragon Claw, Blast Burn)
  2. Medicham(XL) (Counter, Power-Up Punch, Psychic)
  3. Ariados (Poison Sting, Cross Poison, Lunge)
  4. Druddigon (Dragon Tail, Dragon Claw, Night Slash)
  5. Scrafty (Counter, Foul Play, Power-Up Punch)
  6. Lickitung(XL) (Lick, Body Slam, Power Whip)
  7. Lurantis (Fury Cutter, Leaf Blade, Superpower)
  8. Sylveon (Quick Attack, Moonblast, Psyshock)
  9. Seaking (Poison Jab, Icy Wind, Drill Run)
  10. Lycanroc (Midnight) (Counter, Stone Edge, Psychic Fangs)

Pokémon marked with (S) perform almost equally in their regular and Shadow forms; Pokémon marked with (XL) require Candy XL power-ups to reach their full potential.

Pokémon Go Love Cup: Best Safe Switches

These Pokémon serve as switch options for your lead – should the opening pairing be to your disadvantage, switch in one of these monsters instead to preserve your lead Pokémon for later. According to this purpose, these are primarily Pokémon that counter some of the most popular leads or are strong leads themselves.

  1. Ariados (Poison Sting, Cross Poison, Lunge)
  2. Seaking (Poison Jab, Icy Wind, Drill Run)
  3. Lickitung(XL) (Lick, Body Slam, Power Whip)
  4. Charizard(S) (Wing Attack, Dragon Claw, Blast Burn)
  5. Sylveon (Quick Attack, Moonblast, Psyshock)
  6. Medicham(XL) (Counter, Power-Up Punch, Psychic)
  7. Lickylicky (Lick, Body Slam, Earthquake)
  8. Galarian Slowbro (Poison Jab, Sludge Bomb, Psychic)
  9. Miltank (Rollout, Body Slam, Thunderbolt)
  10. Kingler (Mud Shot, Crabhammer, X-Scissor)

Pokémon Go Love Cup: Best Closers

These Pokémon are especially strong when there are no shields left in play on either side – they are incredibly tough themselves or end battles with a single hit of their powerful charge attacks.

  1. Camerupt (Incinerate, Earth Power, Overheat)
  2. Talonflame (Incinerate, Brave Bird, Flame Charge)
  3. Alomomola (Waterfall, Psychic, Hydro Pump)
  4. Medicham(XL) (Counter, Power-Up Punch, Psychic)
  5. Shadow Charizard (Wing Attack, Dragon Claw, Blast Burn)
  6. Magcargo (Incinerate, Overheat, Rock Tomb)
  7. Blaziken (Counter, Blaze Kick, Brave Bird)
  8. Hisuian Electrode (Thundershock, Wild Charge, Energy Ball)
  9. Shadow Camerupt (Incinerate, Earth Power, Overheat)
  10. Electrode (Volt Switch, Discharge, Hyper Beam)

Pokémon Go Love Cup: Best Attackers

These Pokémon perform best when fighting a trainer who still has shields, while you no longer have shields yourself – they have the ideal combination of resistances and strong fast attacks to compensate for this disadvantage. For this reason, you rarely see Shadow forms in this category – they take more damage than their regular counterparts, which is very risky at this stage of a match.

  1. Medicham(XL) (Counter, Power-Up Punch, Psychic)
  2. Lickitung(XL) (Lick, Body Slam, Power Whip)
  3. Alomomola (Waterfall, Psychic, Hydro Pump)
  4. Scrafty (Counter, Foul Play, Power-Up Punch)
  5. Magcargo (Incinerate, Overheat, Rock Tomb)
  6. Aromatisse (Charm, Psychic, Thunderbolt)
  7. Spritzee(XL) (Charm, Draining Kiss, Thunderbolt)
  8. Clefable (Charm, Meteor Mash, Psychic)
  9. Wigglytuff (Charm, Ice Beam, Play Rough)
  10. Chansey(XL) (Zen Headbutt, Psychic, Hyper Beam)

Charmers still dominate the Fast Attack category and an old acquaintance in Talonflame makes an appearance in the rankings as well. Charizard is the only notable member of the newly-buffed Wing Attack gang to make it into this format, mostly letting it dominate the skies. There are plenty of other familiar faces here, so if you're already an active PvP player, you won't have to invest too much into building up new fighters for this competition.

On the other hand, this format has decimated the competitive field so much that a completely irrelevant Pokémon like Lycanroc (Midnight) has actually made it into our list – hardly anyone will have a battle-ready version at hand.

Apart from GO Battle League, you should check out this month’s Raids, Field Research, and Spotlight Hours to not miss anything going on in the mobile game.