Are you ready for some fútbol, Utah? The world’s most popular soccer tournament kicked off today and we’re guessing plenty of you are glued to your screens watching Brazil, the tournament’s host, take on Croatia in the World Cup opening game.
Soccer fans have been waiting four long years for this month-long epic battle to commence. 204 initial entries were narrowed down to 31 coveted spots during an exciting preliminary competition. And now the real fun begins.
Team USA doesn’t play until Monday, but you bet we’ll be watching and cheering on Real Salt Lake players Kyle Beckerman and Nick Rimando, who are down in Brazil playing for the United States national team. Learn more about their journeys here: Nick Rimando’s story and Kyle Beckerman’s story.
Now, the big question is, where to watch the games? An estimated 1.9 million people are expected to travel to Brazil to attend at least one of the World Cup matches. But for most of us, our World Cup soccer plans will involve getting together with friends and family to watch the games on the big screen. So where should you go to catch the action?
Bourbon House in Salt Lake City is going to be the place to be in Utah for the next month. As the official pub partner of Real Salt Lake, Bourbon House is passionate about soccer and their doors will open at 10AM daily throughout the World Cup with all matches shown on the big screen. Buzzfeed even picked them as the top place to watch the World Cup in Utah.
Here are some of our other favorite spots:
- Drafts Sports Bar and Grill | 3000 Navajo Trail
Wall-to-wall TV’s including 80″ TV’s, gourmet burgers and pizza
- Miner’s Grill | 1300 Snow Creek Drive Suite RS | @MinersGrill
Park City’s only 96″ LCD video wall, lunch special “World Cup Patty Melt” with fries
Salt Lake City
- Beer Bar | 161 East 200 South
Modern Family’s Ty Burrell’s eatery that features house-made bratwursts, local breads and Belgian fries
- Dick N’ Dixies | 479 E. 300 South
Neighborhood bar, which also offers pool, televisions and regular visits by members of Real Salt Lake
- Gracies Bar | 326 South West Temple
Showing every World Cup match with parties throughout the tournament
- Green Pig | 31 East 400 South
Open early for games and food and drink specials during the matches
- Poplar Street Pub | 242 South 200 West
6,000 square feet; pizzas made from scratch, hand-tossed and cooked on a hot stone
But why just pick one place? With the tournament running for an entire month, you have time to check out each place on our list. To plan your summer accordingly, you can find the full World Cup schedule here and the U.S. schedule below:
US vs. Ghana | June 16
US vs. Portugal | June 22
US vs. Germany | June 26
For those who can’t watch, the NY Times has a great World Cup live blog and is covering every match with live analysis, photos and graphics.
Did we miss any good spots for watching the 2014 World Cup? Let us know your favorites in the comments below!