This Sunday marks the start of the 2022 World Cup, which, this year, will be hosted across the pond in Qatar. Matches will be shown every single day for a whole FOUR weeks, so, naturally you’ll need somewhere to sink and few bevs and cheer on your favourite team. Lucky for you, we’ve put together an extensive list of THE best places to watch the World Cup in Manchester this year below.
Already known for being a buzzing city full of footy fans, dedicated supporters and like-minded celebrants, Manchester houses some of the greatest sports bars, traditional boozers and fan zones in the country, which, this year are looking to be bigger and better than ever.
From vintage shirt exhibitions to pints of ale in some of the city’s longest running institutions, there are plenty of places to let loose this season and (hopefully) celebrate some big wins!
Official Fan Zones and venues doing things differently
4thefans at Love Factory
The new venue’s take on the World Cup will see the action play out on huge indoor screens alongside a match-worn shirt exhibition by Classic Football Shirts, special guest appearances from Wes Brown and Joleon Lescott, private hospitality suites and a special rotating pie menu by Ate Days A Week that changes according to the countries playing.
Escape To Freight Island
All games are FREE to attend at Freight Island this year and will be boosted across various areas and zones within the venue. The visionary food hall and terrace will transform the Platform inside into a fan zone and a dedicated pub zone which will be located in the tap room with an intimate and traditional pub setting. Outside, in the covered and heated Plant Room, Festival of Football will host a family and children friendly zone. There’ll be specialist food and drink offerings, too, alongside pop-up shops and interactive games.
The Oast House
The Oast House is launching an immersive game for its guests to play this World Cup season. The prize for every winning player of the bar’s ‘Champions of Beer’ is a free pint of Madri on the house, and there’s a 50/50 chance of winning every time. Guests must simply guess the correct winner of any England game to claim a free beer.
Tickets for the World Cup shenanigans at New Century Hall are now on sale for just £5, which also gets you a FREE pint on the day, too. The newly restored venue that recently opened as part of NOMA will be showing all of the matches under its disco ceiling with surround sound and plenty of space for partying.
Road To Victory
Presented by AIX Live and taking place at Manchester’s Depot Mayfield, Road to Victory promises immense production combined with the latest interactive technology to deliver an incredible multi-sensory football experience. As well as multiple screens, football fans will also be wowed by a fully immersive light show which will add to the electric atmosphere for England’s biggest World Cup matches.
Presenting a new footwear exhibition in collaboration with adidas Originals, Spezial F.C. opens this Friday in a purpose built exhibition space in Circle Square. The exhibition will feature archival shoes that celebrate the culture of football, from vintage classics and match worn football boots to END.’s own collaborations with adidas. Alongside this, Canvas will show a line-up of this year’s matches, as well as exclusive live performances from the likes of Confidence Man, Happy Mondays, DRS and Liam Fray.
Join the team at Contact for this free, friendly and relaxed screening of the second England Fifa World Cup 2022 match on Tuesday 29 November. Featuring a panel discussion from Keisha Thompson and Reece Williams, the pair will use music and games to get under the skin of some of the topics and politics linked to the beautiful game.
Every ticket bought for the games shown at Black Dog include either a can of Camden Hells, Camden Pale or a soft drink. The venue will be showing England vs Iran, England vs USA and England vs Wales, and can be enjoyed alongside a menu of refreshing tipples and food from Kong’s Cantina, a pop-up serving a Mexican-influenced menu of cheesy quesadillas and jam-packed tacos.
The City Arms
Starting off in style, one of Manchester’s best real ale houses, The City Arms is well-known for being a go-to destination for sports fans. Sitting on Kennedy Street, the Manchester bar has a constantly rotating range of ales, and shows the games the traditional, no nonsense way – via a couple of flat screens in the corner of the bar.
Port Street Beer House
The World Cup and mince pies – name a MORE iconic duo. Port Street Beer House will be opening up its saloon for this festive festival of football from 20th November – 18th December. It’s free entry with no bookings available, just walk ups only.
Tib Street Tavern
Equipped with some huge screens made for watching the footy, Tib Street Tavern is one of the city’s favourite sports boozers. You’ll always find the venue full of dedicated fans, chanting and cheering on their team, whilst drinking the bar dry!
This Fan Girl at Derby Brewery Arms, Grafton Arms & Libero
This Fan Girl has curated a line-up of pubs this year that are dedicated to making female fans feel safe and welcome. The Manchester venues involved include the Derby Brewery Arms, Grafton Arms and Libero in Altrincham who have all committed to improving the feeling of safety in their venues, creating more inclusive spaces for this year’s World Cup tournament.
Sitting just a stone’s throw away from Piccadilly Station, The Waldorf is somewhat of a hidden gem. With the charm and allure of a traditional British pub, it makes for a great setting for sinking pints and watching the football. The cosy space can get quite busy, too, often making for a truly unforgettable atmosphere.
The White Lion
Another ‘proper’ boozer, The White Lion is always packed full of footy fans and the finest Castlefield clientele, carrying the heart of a local country inn. It’s a pub that welcomes you with open arms, and, once you’ve finished your beer, you can also head across the road to catch a glimpse of the Roman ruins of a city that once was as it sits on the site of the Mamucium.
The Sawyer Arms
That dark oak pub on Deansgate with the tempting posters of cocktail pitchers pinned to the walls, The Sawyer Arms is also a GREAT place to watch the football. It’s absolutely massive inside, often heaving no matter what time you pop by, so there’s absolutely no doubt that the crowd in here will be electric for every single match.
Sir Ralph Abercromby
Named after a British soldier and politician, this boozer has a rich and intriguing history. Built in the 19th century, it’s one of the few remaining structures in the area from the Peterloo Massacre. It’s also believed that wounded people from the massacre were brought into the pub for medical treatment. It still stands strong now, serving up pints of tasty ale.
Self-declared as a proper pub and named after a potato, what better place to go to watch the World Cup?! The Oxnoble walks that tightrope between cosy and rowdy, usually depending on which day you go down there. If there’s some football on it’s going to be full of footy lads – but can also be cosy and perfect for these cold, wet times.
The Friendship Inn
Most well-known for being THE student pub, The Friendship Inn in Fallowfield has an unrivalled reputation for its excellent selection of beers and sports coverage. In summer, you’ll usually find its terrace brimming with the bustling sounds of students, and as the seasons change, it also serves as a fitting place for watching the football with a pint of stout by your side.
If you’ve never been to The Orion in Withington, I suggest you make the trip ASAP. It’s full of life’s weird and wonderful, and drinks are unbelievably cheap – I’m talking pints for under 3 quid, which isn’t something often witnessed in 2022. Need I say much else?
The definition of a friendly local boozer, The Metropolitan in Didsbury serves a mix of proper pub grub and a huge range of beers, wines and cocktails. It makes for a great space to enjoy sport, especially if there’s a large group of you as you’ll be able to find a spot big enough for all your raucous celebrating.
The Bay Horse Tavern
A modern take on the Victoria boozer, The Bay Horse has become an institution, serving an endless list of great booze, alongside a menu of pub classics. Over the years, it’s become a cosy country retreat slap bang in the middle of urban, city living. The venue will screen all of the England games, and there’s no need to book – just pop along!
New Manchester gaming bar, Calcio has opened its doors early in preparation for this year’s World Cup games. The venue houses classic international football shirts on the walls that vary throughout the year, turning it into an art gallery for sportswear enthusiasts. In each of its booths, guests also get their own TV to enjoy the match intimately, alongside food from What’s Your Beef and some excellent drinks deals.
Referring to itself as the ‘reinvented’ sports bar, Second City offers fans a lively hangout space to catch all of the action. With the addition of a 136-inch screen, an 85-inch screen, and two 45-inch screens showing multiple channels at once, you won’t miss a thing!
Pie & Ale
Pies and footy?! What could be better. Pie and Ale sits as part of Northern Quarter’s Lever Street, and always makes a great destination to enjoy a bit of sport. The venue features TV screens and an indulgent menu of pies including; Wild Boar & Chorizo, Leek Cheese and Potato and Mexican Bean Chilli.
Manchester bar, Brickhouse Social has announced it will be showing all of the footballing fixtures across its 3-floor venue. The venue which has 12 screens, 6 of which are over 120 inches will also be dressed for the occasion in World Cup decor, and has recruited a face painter for all England games. A DJ will also be playing all of the World-Cup classics alongside the matches.
Twenty Twenty Two
Manchester dive bar Twenty Twenty Two is opening its doors early for all of England’s World Cup games this year! Guests will get the chance to take advantage of bar’s happy hour, which features bottles of wine for £10, £5 cocktails, cask ale for £2.80, pilsner for £2.80 and bottles of Prosecco for £15.
Northern Quarter’s hidden basement beer hall, Cooper Hall is showing all of the games this year. The venue is owned by the team behind the bar’s Dusk Til Pawn and Wood and Co, and offers guests a cracking menu of cocktails alongside draft beer, wines and spirits.
If you’re a lover of sport, then this bar has got you covered and then some. It already shows sports all day long from Sky, BT & Box Office events across its premium HD wide screens, and will be showing all of this year’s matches, too. The venue will even provide the food and drinks!
Hello Oriental will offer those watching the game a huge menu of East Asian eats and a well-stocked bar that now serves soju – AKA ‘Korean vodka’! The venue houses three massive projector screens and a cutting-edge PA system that makes the unique basement space an immersive place to enjoy this year’s matches. Table reservations will be available from one hour before kick-off, and it’ll remain in place until 30 minutes after the final whistle.
The Spinningfields bar will offer VIP and themed food and drink packages for this year’s World Cup, as well as live DJs and entertainment and an exclusive VIP area! Packages start from £50pp, which is then redeemable on food and drinks on arrival.
Society, Manchester’s independent street food and craft beer hideaway, is hosting a huge party to manifest ‘bringing it home’ for the 2022 World Cup. With brand new screens and long tables, there’s plenty of space for groups big or small to enjoy the games. Guests can order straight to the table from any of Society’s street food traders as well as Vocation’s bar, boasting a huge selection of beers, wines, spirits and cocktails. It’s also free to book and walk-in tables are available, too.
Pen & Pencil
One of Northern Quarter’s OG’s, the Pen & Pencil offers a huge selection of cocktails, as well as brunch and lunch dishes, so guests will be able to spend all day cheering on their team with screens available at all viewpoints.
Fans can grab FREE beer at The Refuge’s free entry World Cup celebrations this month and next! The Oxford Road institution serves as a spacious celebration space to watch this year’s games with its stocked bar, hearty menu and after dark DJs.
Deansgate’s hidden gem, The Mews will be showing all of the World Cup games with a cheeky half time flatbread! Alongside this, the bar will also be doing 2-4-£5 pints of pilsner for the full 90 mins AND its After Work Social will be running at its normal times, so get yourself down for some unbeatable bargains.
Nell’s (Kampus & Common)
If you want cheap beers whilst watching the match, Nell’s at Kampus and Common is the place to be! Both bars have happy hours running from 4pm – 7pm Monday – Friday, and also offers its mega pizza for just £7.77 until 4pm. Both bars will be showing all games, and advise booking in advance!
GRUB will host this year’s matches across three venues; Chapeltown Picture House, The Hall and its Basement Bar. The screenings will be complete with top booze, great independent street food, an amazing atmosphere and one of the city’s warmest welcomes.
Showing the games on a massive screen inside the friendly local pub, Prestwich Social will provide an electric atmosphere this World Cup season with plenty of free flowing cocktails, beers and pub grub!