Unless you’re one of the fortunate few who has a season ticket to watch your favourite team whenever you like, finding a way to watch football can be particularly difficult when you’re a student. Not everyone has the funds to cover paying for the sports packages with your TV services supplier, so deciding on a way to watch your favourite sport can be a bit of a challenge. Most turn to their local pub to help them realise their footy fanaticism, but more often than not a crowded inn with overly drunk supporters can mean you end up seeing more of the back of someone’s head than the match. However, with our guide to the best places to watch football in London you’ll know exactly where to go in your new student city.
Widely touted by all as an amazing venue for sports fans, The Dugout is also the perfect place to grab a late-night bite as it stays open until 4am, screening whatever games are available. There are tables with their own screens, which you’ll find indispensable when it comes to some of the bigger matches. With cocktails and international bottled beers available, this may not be your typical pint and packet of crisps venue, but a bit of class never hurt anyone.
Riley’s Sports Bar
With four gigantic screens and 34 smaller screens showing up to 70 channels around the world, there’s no chance that you’ll miss out on any of the action at Riley’s. Now a long standing feature of London’s theatre-land, this Americana inspired sports bar has a strong emphasis on pool, meaning you can play multiple games of that and snooker whilst you wait for kick-off. Staff are friendly, drinks are cheap (or as cheap as it gets in London) and it gets busy around big matches – so make sure to book in advance.
Owned by Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville, Cafe Football is situated in the Westfield shopping centre, and though it may not be the typical footie pub location, this venue means you can enjoy a meal as you watch the game, without being crowded by tons of over eager fans. The restaurant is, obviously, strongly influenced by the sport and an array of screens showcasing the current matches adorn the walls of this establishment. Prices at Cafe Football may mean you don’t visit here as often as the local pub, however.
Located in Clapham across the road from Clapham Common, The Alexandra manages an authentic Irish vibe without feeling try hard. With a wooden interior and a relaxed atmosphere, the cheap beers are extremely welcome. With a sports line-up including football, rugby and boxing you’re sure to find something worthy of your viewing time. If you’re planning on making your way down with a large group take a look at booking the ‘Presidents Room’ which has its own bar for your private use.
A firm favourite for Finsbury Park aficionados, the Faltering Fullback has an amazing beer garden – which is responsible for most of its appeal – a quirky decor, a Thai menu and an Irish sensibility. The beer garden is situated over three levels, with covered and heated benches, meaning you can find a comfortable nook even in the middle of winter. This venue generally gets quite busy but that’s understandable with such a cool setting. Described as a ‘sport-watchers paradise‘ the beers are cheap too.
Know of any other locations that come top of your list for watching football? Let us know in the comments! Also, while you’re here, check out our student accommodation in London.