The holidays are approaching, but so is the world’s biggest sporting event.
State of play: The 2022 FIFA World Cup kicks off in Qatar this month, with 64 games taking place between Nov. 20 and Dec. 18. It’s the first time the tournament it will take place outside of the summer months. Why? Organizers needed to beat Qatar’s summertime heat.
Why it matters: Bars and restaurants will be packed with people watching matches over the next several weeks. Every bar in Charlotte is a little bit more soccer-friendly after Charlotte FC’s inaugural season.
Details: The tournament starts with eight groups with four teams in each group. Qatar and Ecuador open the tournament on Nov. 20 at 11am on FS1.
The United States play in Group B with England, Iran and Wales, each of whom they will play once. The top two teams in each group advance to single-elimination play. Here’s the USA schedule (all three matches kick off at 2pm and will air on FOX):
- Nov. 21 vs. Wales
- Nov. 25 vs. England
- Nov. 29 vs. Iran
You can watch the entire tournament on FOX, FOX Sports and FS1.
Of note: Charlotte FC striker Karol Świderski will represent Poland in the tournament. They face Mexico on Nov. 22 at 11am.
Here are three events, plus 25 places to watch.
Watch USA’s first game of the tournament on a massive screen in Romare Bearden Park. Two matches will be shown: Senegal vs. Netherlands at 11am and USA vs. Wales at 2pm.
Details: Charlotte’s Major League Soccer team will host a free watch party on Nov. 21 from 11am-5pm. Tickets are available here.
- Charlotte FC and USA gear, plus food and beverages, will be available for purchase.
- A mini-pitch will also be set up at the event.
Location: 300 S. Church St.
- The first beer is on them and there will be first com, first serve appetizers. Details.
Location: 601 S. Cedar St.
Head to Camp North End’s Ford Building to watch Netherlands vs. Ecuador at 11am and USA vs. England at 2pm on Nov. 25 and France and Denmark at 11am and Mexico vs. Argentina at 2pm on Nov. 26.
Details: The watch parties start at 10am and run until 5pm.
- Parking and admission are free. There will be food and drinks for purchase.
Location: Ford Building at 1774 Statesville Ave.
Details: The South End sports bar will open every day at 11am, offering daily drink and some food specials, which they will post on their website.
Location: 200 E. Bland St.
2. Angry Ale’s
Sound will be on for all USA games at this Montford favorite. They open at 11am daily.
Details: Find daily drink specials here.
Location: 1518 Montford Drive
The Tottenham Hotspur bar in Uptown will certainly be packed during the tournament.
Details: Expect an ample whiskey selection, along with cocktails and pints of Guinness. Plus they will be serving food from neighboring Queen City Bites & Crafts (QCBC) during 8am games.
Location: 144 Brevard Ct. Unit A
4. Big Ben Pub
The Elizabeth spot is ready for the World Cup after hosting Charlotte FC watch parties all year.
Details: Expect a special menu reflecting the countries playing. For instance, they’ll serve empanadas with infused cilantro ancho chili rice and southwestern ranch for $11 and Quilmes beer for $5 to represent Argentina.
- The bar will have expanded hours, owner Neel Gandhi tells Axios. It won’t be open for 5am matches, but will be open for select 8am matches. Check out their Instagram for the latest.
- They’ll open at 10am for most of the tournament.
- Reservations are encouraged if you want to secure seating instead of showing up hours before a match to claim a table. To make a reservation call 704-817-9697, message them on Instagram or email [email protected].
Location: 1535 Elizabeth Ave.
Grab a craft beer and cheer on your team.
Details: They will show all USA games and will open early, at 1:30pm, for USA games on Nov. 21 and Nov. 29. Expect food trucks during the tournament, too. Here’s the current food truck schedule:
Location: 195 N. Trade St. Matthews, N.C.
The former Elizabeth home opened as a bar and restaurant in 2017.
Details: The upstairs watch party room will be available to rent for private World Cup events, owner Neel Gandhi tells Axios, which includes a private bar and projector with game sound.
- Game sound will be on for select games.
- Specials: Domestic buckets will be $15.
Location: 366 N. Caswell Road
The Uptown sports bar sits right next to Bank of America Stadium. It’ll open early for the World Cup.
Details: Clutch will open at 10am and game sound will be on for all USA games. They’ll offer $15 Modelo beer buckets and domestic bucket specials throughout the tournament, owner Neel Gandhi tells Axios.
- Fireball shots will be $6.
Location: 601 S. Cedar St.
Charlotte’s OG soccer bar is always packed during the World Cup. It’s across from Romare Bearden Park in Brevard Court.
Details: Hooligans is an intimate setting, and you’ll probably be standing for the entire match. Expect plenty of craft beer and liquor options. There will be food for purchase from neighboring Queen City Bites and Crafts (QCBC) for 8am games.
Location: 140 Brevard Ct.
This is another regular spot for soccer fans and home for the American Outlaws’ Charlotte chapter (USA supporters).
Details: They will be hosting all USA and Ecuador games, none of which start before 10am, plus all 11am and 2pm games. Large groups looking to watch earlier matches can make a reservation.
Location: 911 E. Morehead St.
The popular Charlotte restaurant chain recently opened its sixth location in SouthPark, Axios Laura Barrero reported.
Details: Expect plenty of TVs, burgers and beer.
Location: Ballantyne: 14015 Conlan Circle, Suite C1
- Huntersville: 16609 Statesville Road Huntersville, N.C.
- Mooresville: 560 River Highway Mooresville, N.C.
- Rea Farms: 9805-D Sandy Rock Place
- SouthPark: 4625 Piedmont Row Drive Suite 115A
- Uptown: 330 N. Tryon St.
Head to LoSo to this German brewery for the tournament.
Details: It will open early for certain matches. Check out the full list here.
Location: 3530 Dewitt Lane
The NoDa bar is cozy and perfect for a beer and an order of pesto brie fries. It’s expanding its hours for the World Cup.
Details: The bar is typically closed on Mondays, but it’ll be open from 1:30-5pm for USA vs. Wales.
Of note: Monday’s menu will be limited to tacos and nachos.
Here are their other expanded hours for November:
- Nov. 25: 1:30pm-2am
- Nov. 26: 10:30am-2pm
- Nov. 27: 10:30am-midnight
- Nov. 29: 1:30pm-midnight
Plus they recently rolled out new specials:
- Tuesday: Three tacos for $12 and an $8 margarita.
- Wednesday and Sunday: 12 wings for $10.
Location: 3120 N Davidson St.
13. Jackalope Jacks
The Plaza Midwood favorite among soccer fans will expand its hours for the tournament. They’ll be open for 8am games, but not 5am games.
Details: Expect a modified menu, but they’ll still serve wings — $12 for 10 wings. We tried the barballo (a mix of barbecue and buffalo sauce) wings during the MLS Cup, and we’d definitely order them again.
Location: 1801 Commonwealth Ave.
Head to NoDa or Wesley Heights for plenty of TVs and plenty of mac-n-cheese.
Details: The NoDa location is your best bet for 8am weekday games as it opens at 7am. It’ll have $5 Mother Earth Brewing’s Beagle Beer on special.
- The Morehead location opens at 11am.
Location: NoDa: 3213 N Davidson St.
The Pineville brewery is ready for the World Cup.
Details: Middle James will open at 7:45am each morning, serving a small breakfast plate (expect traditional items like eggs and bacon) for $6 and beers for $6.50.
- Expect special beers like the Deadball Specialist, a New England IPA, and the Mint City Gold Pale Ale.
- They will also serve daily food specials with each country’s signature dishes when they play.
Location: 400 N Polk St. Unit B, Pineville, N.C.
Head to the longtime soccer home for the Carolina Toffees Everton Football Supporters Club in Uptown. It’s sure to be packed during the World Cup.
Details: QCBC will be open for 11am and 2pm matches. You will be able to order food from there for the 8am matches at Belfast and Hooligans.
Location: 135 Brevard Ct.
The Charlotte brewery and Charlotte FC defender Christian Fuchs are throwing No Fuchs Given World Cup watch parties for all USA matches.
Details: They’re re-releasing the No Fuchs Given lager, which will be on draft throughout the tournament while supplies last. Fuchs will attend the Nov. 21 watch party.
- USA matches will be shown on a new, permanent 110-inch projector screen and on TVs throughout the taproom.
- A portion of proceeds from No Fuchs Given lager sales on Nov. 21 will be donated to Fuchs’ Foxes Sports Foundation, which supports youth soccer players.
Location: 332 W. Bland St.
18. RÍ RÁ
The Irish pub is no stranger to hosting soccer fans. It was packed when Arsenal played in Charlotte in 2019, and fans are sure to show up for the World Cup.
Details: The first level will be open for all 8am matches. Both levels will be open for USA and select other matches.
- Expect breakfast sandwiches and home fries for purchase for early games. They will start serving the regular menu at 11am.
- Plus there will be two nonalcoholic beers available: Guinness 0 in a can for $4 and Heneiken 0.0 in a bottle for $4.
Location: 208 North Tryon St.
The NoDa spot was packed for Charlotte FC matches. It’s expected to be a popular spot for the World Cup, too.
Details: Salud Cerveceria opens at 8am daily and will serve $4 Del Patio house lager drafts on match days at Salud Beer Shop (downstairs) as well. They will also have a breakfast special with food inspired by countries playing the tournament — they’re finalizing the exact menu, but prices will range from $6-$11.
Location: 3306-C N. Davidson St.
This pub is tucked away in Park Road Shopping Center.
Details: They’ll open at 2pm on Nov. 21.
Location: 4151 Park Road
21. Suffolk Punch
Head to this popular South End spot for 8am matches during the week.
Details: They’ll stick with normal business hours, which means opening at 7:30am during the week and 10am on weekends. They’ll show all USA matches.
- You can reserve tables and TVs for games other than USA matches.
They’ll stick with their standard specials:
- Monday: $10 burgers
- Tuesday: Half-off wine
- Wednesday: $8 cocktails
- Thursday and Sunday: $3 beers
Location: 2911 Griffith St.
Before it was Tremont, it was Big Ben for a decade, and briefly Bocado. There are plenty of TVs, as well as indoor and outdoor seating at the Atherton Mill spot.
Details: Expect regular hours and plenty of drink specials, co-owner Neel Gandhi tells Axios:
- Michelob Ultra buckets will be $20.
- Modelo and Corona buckets will be $15.
- A Red Bull and vodka will be $8.
Location: 2000 South Blvd. #530
23. Town Brewing Co.
This Wesley Heights brewery is gearing up for England vs. USA on Nov. 25.
Details: It’ll open at 1pm and serve $5.50 Spratt’s Premium Lager specials. It’ll also have 24 beers on tap, wine, non-alcoholic drinks and a full-kitchen available.
- They’re discussing specials for other matches.
Location: 800 Grandin Road
Home of Charlotte’s Liverpool supporters, Valhalla is another Uptown home to fans of the game.
Details: Expect an intimate atmosphere, plenty of drinks and delicious food.
Location: 317 S. Church St.
25. Workman’s Friend
Grab a pint at this Plaza Midwood Irish pub.
Details: They will open at 1:30pm before 2pm matches, and the kitchen will open at 3pm.
- Special: Slane Irish whiskey is $5 through the end of November.
Location: 1531 Central Ave.
Editor’s note: This guide will be updated throughout the tournament. It was first published in 2018 and last updated in November 2022.