The 2014 World Cup kicks off Thursday in Brazil, with major TV channels all over the world bound to broadcast the opening ceremony. And most – if not all – games during the month-long competition will air as well. However, not all football fans will have access to those games, especially in certain markets, unless they have a cable subscription. Fret not though, because there’s a way for you to watch all the World Cup games without having to pay a dime for TV service.
Quartz and GigaOm have put together guides on how to watch the tournament in the U.S. and in other markets free of charge – although it’s worth pointing out that in many European countries, national television channels will air some, if not most, matches on free TV.
American cord cutters who won’t have access to ESPN can watch all the matches free on Univision, at least until quarter-finals — though they’ll have Spanish commentary. Another way to see some games is to connect to Aereo, if it’s available in your region, and see 10 games that will be streamed on local ABC affiliates.
Finally, if all that fails, American users still can rely on VPN connections to pretend they’re not in the U.S., and tune in to online football streams from Canada and Europe.
Canadian football fans will be able to watch all 64 games on CBC online, and also using iOS and Android apps. Sadly for them though, Canada has not qualified for this year’s World Cup, a tradition for the country that dates almost 30 years. In fact, Canada’s only presence at the tournament was in 1986 in Mexico.
In Ireland, RTE will stream all 64 games on its website and mobile apps, while in the U.K. BBC and ITV will have all the games on TV free of charge, as well as on their respective mobile apps.
In France, TF1 will stream some of the games free of charge, while some will only be available on beIN Sports. A tiny device such as the Chromecast, or anything else capable of beaming down content to a big screen TV should come in handy.
If all fails though and you still haven’t gotten your World Cup football fix, you can always head to a bar, as Quartz advises, with many of them able to provide access to the games and a substantial quantity of beer to either celebrate the win or drown the suffering.
To see all schedules, don’t forget to check this awesome Google Calendar trick, and Google Now will help out with all the scores.