Well you could spend £2,000 on a giant 84″ 4K HD TV before dragging the fridge and microwave into the front room, nailing the door shut and calling the office to tell them you have yellow fever, just so you can stay at home and watch all 64 matches in your pants. Or you could find a top boozer full of friendly faces.
Quicker than Sepp Blatter opening a stuffed brown envelope, here’s our rundown of the best venues to watch the 2018 World Cup.
The Locker Room
5-11 Belvoir Street, Leicester, LE1 6SL
With the world’s footballing flags draped across the walls and a plethora of screens for you to cheer/boo/cry at, The Locker Room in Leicester could be the destination of the summer if you aren’t booking flights to Russia. The atmosphere here is electric on matchdays and with cold beer on tap and hot plates fresh from the kitchen, it’s easy to imagine parking yourself here for the long run to soak in all the World Cup action (although they might insist you go home, shower and change occasionally).
The Horn in Hand
Goldsmith Street, Nottingham, NG1 5JT
Escape from your stuffy old boozer and find out what a pub should look like in 2018 with The Horn in Hand. This brilliant venue has a fresh, friendly style that makes it the perfect place to pull out all your hitherto undiscovered genius punditry while watching the sterling group stage clash of Russia vs Saudi Arabia on pint 2. The fantastic bar staff will even pretend you know what you’re talking about.
1 Queen Street, Derby, DE1 3DJ
This is the year. The year where you don’t let the Mrs. put Celebrity-Love-Island-On-Ice-Factor-Come-Dancing on telly, relegating the football to your grease-covered phone screen. This is the year you head to Bar Sport, Derby’s premier sports bar with a whopping thirty TVs and two massive screens surrounded by a shrine of sporting memorabilia. Couple that with food fit for champions and you’ve got the perfect base for your World Cup month.
The Common Room
127-129 Devonshire Street, Sheffield, S3 7SB
Food, pool, beer, sport. Four ingredients that any football fan will drool at the prospect of. Well prepare your salivation glands to go into overdrive because The Common Room will be providing all of this and more during World Cup season, with every game on display and a tempting range of beers to keep your national anthem-belting vocal cords lubricated. Plus, when England inevitably get knocked out there are some fantastic food options to bring you right back to your happy place.
20-24 Mathew Street, Liverpool, L2 6RE
Set on Liverpool’s iconic Mathew Street, Legends will be rocking this summer as the World Cup action on the big screen TVs arrives fresh from Russia with the locals hoping that the Anfield stars can replicate their sensational 17/18 season. Welcoming fans under every flag, you’ll never drink alone in Legends thanks to the brilliant party atmosphere and chilled-out surroundings.
Tib Street Tavern
74 Tib Street, Manchester, M4 1LG
Manchester’s Tib Street Tavern is not your average public house. The pub hosts regular football quiz nights, live music from the city’s hottest local bands and serves more beer than a Bayern Munich title win celebration. It’s the perfect place to watch the greatest footballing spectacle on earth unfold while wondering what would happen if Pep Guardiola got his hands on the England team.
You can book one of our booths for just £20! 🙌🏻
That deposit can then be redeemed as a bar tab on the day 🍻 pic.twitter.com/Olo1bRT8Zg
— Tib Street Tavern (@TibStreetTavern) May 27, 2018
Tib Street, Manchester, M4 1SH
What happens when you take all of mankind’s favourite sporting past times and cram them into one brilliant bar in the heart of Manchester’s Northern Quarter? Dive NQ, that’s what. This slick, modern venue has beer pong, live sports on big screens, an extensive list of man-cocktails that will have Roy Keane choking on his prawn sandwich and a brilliant atmosphere that just might make you believe England can go all the way.
Shark Club Newcastle
Sandman Signature Hotel, Heber Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 4SD
Instead of staying at home wondering how the folks at Sky Sports News HQ possibly cope with so many screens at once, come to Shark Club and find out for yourself instead. This brilliant bar features wall-to-wall sporting action on big screens. Set in the shadow of Newcastle United’s St. James’ Park, this is the thinking football fan’s dream venue and the perfect place for budding statisticians to get their World Cup fever on.
We'll be showing the #EpsomDerby AND @England vs @Nigeria this Saturday at Shark Club! 🏇⚽
With £18 bottles of prosecco available all day, come and join us for a day of fantastic sporting action – book your tables at the link below👇https://t.co/jv2VIV903I#SharkClub #GameOnSC pic.twitter.com/bNOn85WMFq
— Shark Club UK (@SharkClubUK) May 29, 2018
The Botanic Inn
23-27 Malone Road, Belfast, BT9 6RU
Here at StagWeb we think it’s a crying shame that Northern Ireland won’t be making an appearance in Russia this summer, but thank Michael O’Neil, The Botanic Inn are still bringing the World Cup atmosphere to these shores with a whole month of footballing festivities. The Bot is the place to watch live sport in Belfast and whoever you’re cheering on, you can celebrate/commiserate in style with club nights hosted by some of the city’s top DJs.
We all have a mate this bad at pool…. 😂
🎱Pool Room Now Open | The Botanic Inn🎱
— The Botanic Inn (@BotanicInn) May 10, 2018
Beer & Skittles
Picardy Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3JT
Beer & Skittles’ international feel makes it the perfect place to celebrate the football fiesta going down in Russia whether you’re hopelessly supporting your work sweepstake team or just hoping for an absolute goal fest of a tournament. That being said if there are a few dead rubber matches towards the end of the group stages (here’s looking at you Morocco vs Iran) then you can kill time with an awesome game of neon-lit skittles instead.
332 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, G2 3JA
The American Pie of our list of the UK’s best World Cup sports bars, Campus is a red-cup wielding celebration of the grand ‘ole USA featuring collegiate memorabilia all over the walls and the best sporting action from across the pond on big screen TVs. Except here’s the catch, during June/July Lebron & co will make way for Ronaldo, Messi et al as the goals (hopefully) hit the back of the net over in Russia. Like, totally awesome, dude.
14-16 Rupert Street, London, W1D 6DD
If we could rewrite this year’s World Cup, the Republic of Ireland would definitely have qualified. But while we’ll sadly miss out on Shane Long rocking Russia with a 90th minute winner, we won’t miss out on Waxy O’Connor’s Irish twist on the world’s football festival. You’ll be able to watch all the games live on big screens and take your pick from a selection of whiskies that’s bigger than Brazil’s trophy cabinet.
127 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6JE
If you were going to watch England bomb out of the World Cup at the group stage, then you’d want to do it in style. This year, that place could (and should) be Bar Kick. This brilliant venue is a fantastically laid-back tribute to the beautiful game with an eclectic selection of club scarves and foosball tables to feed your FIFA marketing induced footballing frenzy. Plus there’s a dream team of craft brews on tap.
41-43 Oxford Street, Maritime Quarter, Southampton, SO14 3DP
The Grapes is a pub with real star credentials (it was featured in the background of Netflix date night classic Titanic so even your girlfriend will approve) and it will most certainly feature heavily in Southampton locals’ World Cup plans. Yep, all the action will be shown live here so you can fill your boots with footballing greatness while trading banter with the knowledgeable regulars. And there’s a great range of ales to keep you hydrated. Lovely jubbly.
King and Queen
13-17 Marlborough Place, Brighton, BN1 1UB
If you don’t have plane tickets to fly over to Russia yourself then the next best thing is to arrive at the Brighton’s biggest pub Ye Olde King and Queen, World Cup ’98 shirt on, order an ale and watch all the footballing magic unravel. With a selection of big screens around the pub, you’ll be able to see every kick, twist and bend of the ball with fingers crossed that it won’t be England’s goal it lands in (spoiler alert: it probably will be).
The Fat Fox
11 Victoria Road South, Southsea, PO5 2SP
Sometimes, one massive projector screen just isn’t enough. Which is why The Fat Fox has two. This brilliant bar is built for football fans from the plethora of televisions to watch the biggest games on to the delicious food menu that includes build-your-own burgers and pizzas, “I call this one the Colossal Kammy!”. In a city as passionate about the beautiful game as Portsmouth, we can’t think of anywhere better to cheer on the Three Lions.
Lashings Sports Bar
Lashings House, 81-83 Upper Stone Street, Maidstone, ME15 6HE
When you order your matchday pint of choice in Lashings Sports Bar, you’re doing so on hallowed ground walked by England football legends like Glenn Hoddle and John Barnes. As well as having some of the beautiful game’s true greats in for Q&A’s, Lashings will have the World Cup’s best matches on their big screen TVs, so you can put all your Match of the Day honed analysis to good use at last.
5 Gun Street, Reading, RG1 2JR
Ping pong and World Cup football. A match made in heaven? Nope, a match made in Smash. This brilliant bar treats Reading locals to it’s signature brand of sporting fun as they play whiff whaff whilst quaffing pints of craft ales with live games on big screens. All wrapped up in neon-lit American dive bar style surroundings that will certainly trump any Saturday night down the Nag’s Head. FIFA World Cup? Completed it mate.
U Shed, Bristol, BS1 5UH
Sipping cold pints of cider with the windows wide open, looking out onto the Bristol Harbourside whilst casually explaining to your mates why England will never lift the Jules Rimet… That could be you this summer when you head to BSB Waterside for their World Cup celebrations. This brilliant bar has a fantastic party atmosphere so even if the Three Lions are tamed in Russia, you’ll be able to celebrate like it’s 1966 anyway.
Racks Bar & Kitchen
St Paul’s Road, Bristol, BS8 1LX
Racks Bar & Kitchen is the World Cup barbecue you never knew you needed. This summer, you can pull up a chair and watch the best of the action at one of Bristol’s top sports bars with huge screens and projectors. Plus with a guaranteed view of every top-corner free kick and world-class volley, as well as special deals including a steak sandwich and beer for only £10, you’d be madder than Maradona to miss out. (It’s first come first served with limited standing room available, so get down here quick).
11-12 Westgate Buildings, Bath, BA1 1EB
As proud Bath locals (our offices are literally just across the road, stop by, bring doughnuts!) there’s nowhere better to get your cider on when the sun’s out and the football’s on the telly. This summer The Cork are going to be throwing a Peter Crouch sized celebration of the world’s beautiful game with every single game shown on their massive projector screen and there are even karaoke booths if you fancy warming up your voice for a rousing rendition of Vindaloo.
— The Cork (@TheCorkBath) May 24, 2018
The Bath Brew House
14 James Street West, Bath, BA1 2BX
If you’re going to demand more of this World Cup’s England team then you need to demand more of your accompanying beer too. Fortunately, The Bath Brew House is here to show your taste buds what real brews taste like. Featuring a wealth of beers from around the UK as well as their own brilliant concoctions, this is the perfect place to cheer on the boys while putting something a little more cultured in your pint glass for a change.
— The Bath Brew House (@BathBrewHouse) May 15, 2018
Crantock, Newquay, Cornwall, TR8 5SE
You couldn’t ask for a more English backdrop for the Three Lions’ World Cup campaign than the stunning seaside vista that surrounds Cornwall’s Bowgie Inn. This fantastic pub will hit “Wearing a St. George’s Cross flag to bed” levels of football fever this summer as the Crantock locals arrive in numbers hoping to see Harry Kane and co reign supreme in Russia. Plus, it’s impossible to lose your head over a b@tsh!t VAR decision in a place this beautiful.
Who needs the Caribbean when you have Cornwall!? 😍 pic.twitter.com/6qYL5GgQ23
— Bowgie Inn (@BowgieInn) May 20, 2018
The Hole in the Wall
Little Castle Street, Exeter, Devon, EX4 3PX
While we’ve got everything crossed that there won’t be any holes in England’s wall this summer, there’s nowhere better to celebrate/commiserate the Three Lions’ World Cup efforts in Exeter than this awesome bar. Once voted the pub of the year by local fans, this is three floors of sporting brilliance with a massive range of drinks, delicious food and pool tables for halftime contests of your own.
Sharkeys Sports Bar
215A Old Christchurch Road, Bournemouth, BH1 1JZ
If we sat down after a pint (or two) with the job of designing our own sports bar, we imagine the end product would look a little something like Sharkeys. Set in the heart of Bournemouth, this is a mecca of all things sporting and with 4K big screens, you’ll be able to see every World Cup goal in crystal clarity. And if that wasn’t enough to get your pulse racing, then Sharkeys also has a full pool-hall of fun ready for you once the final whistle’s blown. Nice one.
Elevens Bar & Grill
15 Castle Street, Cardiff, CF10 1BS
Pizzas, burgers and the chance to see Serbia crash out of the World Cup to a surprise defeat versus Costa Rica (karma’s a b…) will all be on the agenda at Cardiff’s Elevens Bar & Grill this summer. With an arsenal of Ultra HD 4K TVs and state-of-the-art surround sound systems you can bask in the glory of the greatest show on Earth without needing to board the plane to Russia. How’s that for preparation?
The Bucket List
Wind Street, Swansea, SA1 1DY
While seeing Gareth Bale tear up all those pristine Russian pitches was most certainly on our bucket list for this World Cup, this brilliant Swansea bar is the very next best thing with a mammoth selection of 104 different beers to try. If that doesn’t get your mouth watering then the ‘beer can’ man-cocktails served in, yep, you guessed it, beer cans, will certainly get the job done. All with the best footballing action thrown up on big-screen TVs.