538 Vanderbilt Ave., Prospect Heights; 718-857-5777
Woodwork’s already everyone’s favorite Brooklyn soccer bar, and it will live up to its reputation by opening as early as 6 a.m. for matches, and by offering menu and drink specials that reflect the countries of the teams playing (empanadas and Corona for when Mexico plays, etc.). Reservations are strongly advised, but don’t bother trying to get one to the insanely popular USA vs. England opener match on Saturday: It’s been sold out for three weeks. (Reserve by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.)
131 Atlantic Ave., Brooklyn Heights; 718-858-5810
For those who prefer the indie atmosphere to the hard-core hooligan one, Floyd is the perfect relaxed football joint. Turn-of-the-last-century portraits and worn upholstery trim the library-esque front corner, and the flat-screen TVs will show every match of the Cup. A menu features housemade beer cheese, but you’re also allowed to BYO food. Reservations for large parties are accepted, and an indoor bocce court serves as entertainment for the anti-football folks in your group.
133 W. 33rd St., nr. Seventh Ave.; 212-629-6191
All 32 team flags hang above the 60-foot bar, to be removed via dramatic ceremony each time one loses. The basement dartboards and billiards table will remain open in case a game gets slow, and 200-plus beers, including the bar’s namesake brew, are on hand. Stout boasts 36 HD screens — but staffers readily admit they’re rooting for Team USA only because Ireland didn’t make it, so try not to mention Thierry Henry.
The Black Horse Pub
568 Fifth Ave., Park Slope; 718-788-1975
The World Cup Opening Day party at the Black Horse will feature $4 pints, fish-and-chips specials, and the chance to win signed English football jerseys and two tickets to an upcoming Red Bull–LA Galaxy game. For the rest of the tournament, enjoy a more laid-back atmosphere than most; the Black Horse’s noise level is relatively low, and plenty of sunlight gets in through the big front windows.
11th Street Bar
510 E. 11th St., nr. Ave. A; 212-982-3929
11th Street is English through-and-through, from their pub atmosphere to their clientele of die-hard Liverpool fans. While England supporters of all types are welcome, the majority of the bar will have their eyes on Liverpudlian heroes Johnson, Gerrard, and Carragher.
239 W. 14th St., nr. Eighth Ave.; 212-243-9308
The self-proclaimed oldest Spanish restaurant in New York, La Nacional serves up slightly smoky chorizo and a well-above-average paella to hungry soccer fans. Owner and executive chef Jesus “Lolo” Manso is planning a special celebration whenever La Furia Roja claims a victory, but La Nacional wouldn’t reveal what it will entail quite yet.
55 Grand St., nr. West Broadway; 212-274-8225
Supporters of Team Mexico will find $5 beers, $3 appetizers, and top-shelf tequilas for when the action gets heated. Chef Thierry Amezcua, a Mexico City native, also serves up breakfast specials — the restaurant will be opening early to fit in every Cup game.
Zum Schneider Biergarten
107 Ave. C, at 7th St.; 212-598-1098
This cheery indoor beer garden started the festivities early but airing highlights of World Cups gone by for the past week. The long tables and bench seating are especially suited to large groups; bowls of big pretzels are regularly refreshed; and, for the early-morning games, a special German and Bavarian breakfast will be added to the menu.
195 Dekalb Ave., Fort Greene; 718-855-9190
Next to actually watching the games live in Cape Town, you can’t get a more authentic experience: the first South African restaurant in New York serves regional cuisine and a lengthy list of South African wines and, on June 29, PlayBeautiful will bring their traveling 200-seat indoor theater (modeled after the Johannesburg stadium!) to the café.
33-18 28th Ave., Astoria; 718-545-8250
Brazilian fans have packed Favela Grill for years of World Cups. If you’re quieter about your love for Brazil, try nearby Impanema Grill, from the same owners, for beer towers, Caipirinha drink specials, and Brazilian-jersey raffles.
340 West Broadway, at Grand St.; 212-431-0021
Behind Felix’s French façade is the owner’s Brazilian wife, who is responsible for the mass following of Brazilian soccer fans Felix has built up over the years. Expect the bar, tables, outdoor dining area, and sometimes even the street to be packed with fans of team Brazil morning, noon, and night while they nosh on low-brow French classics like moules-frites, steak tartare, and spicy merguez sausage.
32-07 30th Ave., Astoria; 718-626-2164
Those cheering in Greek should stop in at Athens Café for nine plasma screens and all that Greek spirit. Located in the heart of exceedingly Greek Astoria, if the quaint café doesn’t suit your needs, just stroll down the block. Every TV will be tuned in on Greece.
47-30 Vernon Blvd., Long Island City; 718-937-2900
If Italy’s your team, check out Testaccio Ristorante, where they will offer a special Italian breakfast for those proud enough to get up and cheer at 9:30 a.m.
4 Berry St., Williamsburg; 718-782-2829
With one owner Italian and the other German, the loyalties here are split between Groups D and F. Generally speaking, the bar is too new to have any serious followers for any one team, but the barkeeps are leaning toward Italy at the moment. Berry Park will offer drink specials and ceremonious removal of losing teams’ flags from the wall throughout the Cup.
78 Second Ave., at 5th St.; 212-253-5410
This normally romantic East Village restaurant, owned by an Algerian husband and wife, goes full-on soccer fan for their home teams’s games — they’re opening for brunch early Sunday morning for the Algeria-Slovenia kickoff, and will stay open late for evening games.
545 Flatbush Ave., Lefferts Gardens; 718-941-1093
If you’re looking for an authentic West African lounge, it doesn’t get much closer to the real thing than Meytex. The place has become a sort of social club for the local West African crowd, says owner and native Ghanian Mercy Arhin. She’ll open the cafe at 7 a.m. to show all the games on the big screen and will be serving up traditional dishes like egushie (spinach stew) and banku (light, doughy rolls).
366 Third Ave., second fl., at 27th St.; 212-889-2329
Japas 27 normally sticks to karaoke, but for Team Japan’s three big games, they’ll be using their two 50-inch screens and their karaoke sound system to broadcast team spirit. While the bar will only be showing Japan’s games (June, 14, 19, and 24) and charging a $5 cover, sake, sojou, and beer deals abound inside.
74 Third Ave., nr. 12th St.; 212-982-2591
Here is where football is religion. This year, they’re boasting over 100 live matches inundating you from the warm glow of more than 20 TVs. Manchester United is definitely the crowd favorite here, but it’s less biased than many of the smaller bars that often only show the games of their preferred team. More than 40 beers and a raucous, shot-pounding crowd will keep your energy up on hour 10 of straight tube-watching.Sláinte
304 Bowery, nr. Houston St.; 212-253-7030
Sláinte-goers can catch every game on 10 TVs and a 10-foot projector. A pub where the loyalty normally lies with Ireland, the bartenders now proudly proclaim that they’ll root for anyone who isn’t France. The bar will have drink specials like two-for-one draft beers and select wines and will be raffling off Cup-themed prizes as a benefit for the Red Cross’s Haiti relief fund, including a Brazilian soccer jersey signed by Pele himself.