By far, the most popular sports event in the world is the FIFA World Cup. It is estimated that almost 25% of the world’s population will watch the tournament. In 2018, the World Cup will begin on Thursday, June 14th and run through Sunday, July 15th. During that time, your favorite teams will play a portion of the 64 matches available. Football fans (soccer for those in the US) are more than ready for the World Cup to begin. This year you can watch every World Cup game on a host of channels around the world by using a VPN.
Best VPN for the World Cup
VPN providers like IPVanish and ExpressVPN host servers in countries around the world. Connect to any location and watch matches as if you were sitting at a local coffee shop or your favorite internet cafe. That way, you can enjoy the specific coverage you want to see.
With over 250 million players in more than 200 countries, football is the most popular sport in the world. There is evidence that a version of the game was played in ancient Greece, prior to 400 BC. More modern versions of football are mentioned in English literature in the 12th century. Back then, the game was primarily played during major religious festivals like Christmas and Easter. The earliest reference to the game being called football goes back to 1314. It is clear to see why the sport has become so popular in almost all major countries in the world.
Here are some of the top streaming channels around the world in specific regions for World Cup 2018.
|United States||ESPN, FOX, FS1, NBC||Yes||English|
|Africa||SuperSport||Yes||English, Afrikaans, Xhosa, Sotho, Zulu|
|Middle East/North Africa||BeIN Sports||Yes||Multiple|
Even with the game’s popularity, some countries focus on it more than others. Several countries have been strong in FIFA World Cup competitions for some time. Since the World Cup started in 1930, only 8 teams have won the championship. Those teams are Brazil, Germany, Italy, Argentina, Uruguay, France, England, and Spain. If your favorite team is not in that list, you can still enjoy watching the matches. Let’s take a look at some of the strong teams in the World Cup this year.
The first team we will mention is Germany. The team won it all in 2014. Before that, the last time that Germany won the World Cup, the Berlin Wall had fallen 7 months prior, and the football team was still called West Germany. Despite the current strength of the team, their last championship win before winning it all in 2014 came in 1990. The German team is defending their World Cup championship, so you can bet they will be fierce competitors in this year’s matches.
Another highly favored team in the 2018 FIFA World Cup is Argentina. They will be an extremely difficult team to beat because the whole team is filled with very strong players. Just like the Olympics, professional players may play on their home country’s team. Fortunately for Argentina, the top footballer in the world (Lionel Messi) happens to be from Rosario (Argentina). Though one player does not guarantee the success of the whole team, it is hard to deny that he will have a huge effect on the game. As long as Messi is healthy, any team that plays Argentina will have a hard time winning.
That brings us to the Brazilian team. Though their last World Cup win came in 2002, it is hard to deny their dominance. To date, they are the most successful team in World Cup history. With five wins under their belt, Brazil will likely play very well, especially since they are playing the games in their homeland.
This year, Russia hosts the 2018 World Cup. It will mark the first time that Europe has hosted the World Cup since 2006. Let’s take a look at the groupings going into the tournament.
|Group A||Group B||Group C||Group D||Group E||Group F||Group G||Group H|
Here is the schedule for the next few days of the 2018 World Cup.
|Tuesday, July 10||Wednesday, July 11|
|France v. Belgium||Croatia v. England|
For a full list of the games and times, you can see them here. Please note that the times we provide are in Eastern Standard Time (EST), so you may need to make the adjustments.
Let’s take a closer look at the best VPN to stream the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
ExpressVPN brings together fast VPN access with MediaStreamer which acts as a Smart DNS service to help unblock access to some great geo-restricted content. The service will help encrypt your connection and unblock live sporting events. You will even find a list of the latest live entertainment and sporting events on their website.
|94||160||3,000||OpenVPN, SSTP, L2TP, PPTP||$12.95||$99.95||30 day|
As you can see in the table above, ExpressVPN manages a very large VPN network. Beyond the USA and Canada, the ExpressVPN network boasts hundreds of servers in key locations to help protect their user’s privacy. You can use their network to protect your privacy, unblock censorship, and watch your favorite teams from anywhere.
The ExpressVPN app allows you to select a server location down to the city but you can not choose a specific server. Instead, the client will select a server in your chosen location. You also need to know that some cities are not shown on the recommended tab inside the client. You may find that issue with the cities we mentioned. Simply select the “All” tab, open North America, and then open Canada. At this point, you can select the Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver server locations.
While ExpressVPN is sold at a higher price point than the other services in our list, the value is high given the size of their network and service features. You can connect a computer, handheld device, router, and game console (SmartDNS) with a single VPN account for just $6.67 a month with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
IPVanish has fast and very stable servers in London and Manchester. That means you can expect a fast and reliable service. You may also notice that they have more servers in those two cities than just about any service, so server crowding won’t be a problem. IPVanish hosts servers in London, Manchester, Nottingham, and Glasgow. Given those reasons, they take the top spot for usage in the region.
|60||89||1,200||OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, PPTP||$7.50||$58.49||7 day|
As well as quite a bit of coverage in the UK, IPVanish hosts servers in every continent other than Antarctica. The network is usually the fastest VPN in North America and Europe when we perform our speed tests. You will find multiple server locations in countries like the US and several in the UK. You can select a location or an individual server from the drop-down menu.
IPVanish hosts more than 75 servers spread throughout the UK and you can choose to connect to any of them. We suggest selecting one that starts with “a” in the server name. For example, you would look for one labeled similarly to lon-a01.ipvanish.com. In most cases, you will notice that the “a” servers are the fastest. We tested IPVanish servers in London and Manchester and found the speed to be quite fast. They offer great numbers even when testing from the United States.
When it comes to value IPVanish is hard to beat. They offer unlimited access to their VPN network and custom software for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Amazon Firestick and more for $7.50 a month or $58.49 a year. That works out to just $4.87 a month. A 7-day money back guarantee will cover you as a new member.
CyberGhost was founded in 2001 by 7 enthusiastic young team members in Bucharest, Romania. Since that time the company has grown into one of the largest VPN services in the world. The team of 50+ members is focused on protecting users privacy. Robert Knapp, co-founder and CEO, continues to lead the team even after they joined the Crossrider group in 2017. Since that time the CyberGhost network has expanded quite a bit.
|60||80||2960||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec||$11.99||$49.50||45 day|
CyberGhost offers a nice mix of server locations, strong encryption, and the ability to unblock popular streaming services like Netflix, YouTube Red, and Amazon Prime. Some of the channels even let you unblock geo-restrictions for multiple regions. For example, you can access Amazon Prime video content in the US, Germany, or others. The Windows client also gives you the option to surf anonymously, protect Wi-Fi, torrent anonymously, unblock basic websites (Google, Facebook Instagram, etc.), and choose a server.
In this case, we decided to test servers in London and Manchester. You would start by clicking on the “Choose My Server” option. From there, you can expand any country and select a specific server. The CyberGhost network includes a number of servers in London in Manchester. When we connected to them to test their performance and the results were as expected.
The CyberGhost VPN client is one of our favorites. It is very easy to use and includes a number of advanced features to help protect your online privacy. They have a development team in Germany that is continually adding features to the client and mobile apps. You can sign up for full access to the CyberGhost network from just $2.75 a month during their current promotion.
The VyprVPN team is based out of Austin, Texas and has a long history of fighting for user’s Internet privacy. They have hosted an annual privacy panel at SXSW for several years and have even spent time in Washington, DC lobbying for privacy reforms. You will find the VPN service to be in line with their values.
|47||57||700||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$14.99||$74.99||30 day|
You will notice some added features with VyprVPN depending on which account you choose. The VyprVPN Premium plan includes 5 simultaneous connections, VyprVPN Cloud, and Chameleon protocol. The cloud feature allows you to control you’re own VPN server in the cloud while the Chameleon protocol helps users in countries like China get around government censorship.
The VyprVPN client does not give you ability to select a specific server number in Miami. Instead you will want to switch the location to Miami. From there the client will automatically connect you to the best VPN server in Chicago. You can see the results of or speed test below. We were able to achieve a download speed of 25.64 Mbps after connecting to a server in Miami.
VyprVPN has been kind in offering our visitors a 40% discount. The coupon stacks on top of their normal term discounts. You can enjoy unlimited VPN and VyprVPN Cloud for just $12.95 a month or $48 a year. The annual account works out to just $4.00 a month. New users are covered by a 30 day money back guarantee.
As a user, Private Internet Access (PIA) provides you with several different options. Previously, you had to set up a profile for each VPN server. Now, connecting to any server in their 30 location countries is easy. As you can see below, the PIA team has organized their servers by region, country, and city. The server locations are listed in alphabetical order by country. Once you select a location, you can connect easily to locations in London, Manchester, Southampton, and Glasgow.
|30||47||3282||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$6.45||$59.95||7 day|
There are a lot of torrent users who love Private Internet Access. The service includes a feature that will stop your system from communicating if the connection to their service drops. Meaning if your encrypted VPN access is dropped for any reason it will keep you safe.
PIA offers a Windows client and other apps that are simple and easy to use. However, you won’t want to underestimate it. PIA offers different levels of privacy protection depending on your needs. You can control encryption levels to help you find the right balance between privacy and speed. As you can see, our speed test showed that PIA performs well in London, Manchester, and Southampton.
When it comes to their Windows client the PIA team has included an Internet kill switch. The kill switch will kill your Internet connection anytime the VPN fails. That can really come in handy for those wanting to ensure anonymity in London. Private Internet Access offers VPN from just $2.50 a month.
How to Use a VPN to Watch the World Cup Live
We will use ExpressVPN for the example of how to use a VPN service to watch the World Cup. First, you’ll want to download the VPN client. ExpressVPN offers client software for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Mobile users can download apps for iOS and Android. You can even use the ExpressVPN router app to secure every device on your network. It will send all your communications through the VPN which extends support to devices like game consoles and streaming boxes. They even have an app for Amazon Fire TV devices.
Now that you’ve had a chance to download and install the software, it’s time to connect. Launch the ExpressVPN client and select a server location. We’ll walk you through step by step using their Windows client. You can also watch on your favorite mobile or streaming device.
- ExpressVPN has a large network of servers all over the world. Select a country in which you want to watch coverage. Some popular choices include US, UK, and Germany.
- We recommend you select OpenVPN (TCP) or (UDP). For streaming videos from sites like YouTube, we use OpenVPN (UDP) because its faster than TCP. They also support PPTP, L2TP, and SSTP. We still recommend OpenVPN UDP for the best mix of speed and privacy protection.
- Click the big round connect button. After a few seconds, you’ll see the shield around the button turn green. There will also be a message letting you know the “VPN is ON”
- You now have an IP address in the USA, as far as anyone can tell online. As such, you can reach any site as if you were sitting there. The same would be true if you connected to a server in the UK or anywhere else in the world.
It is just that easy to do. Now that you have an IP address from an ExpressVPN server in the US, you can browse the Internet or watch the World Cup as if you were actually there. The same is true from any country, so connect to the UK for BBC coverage.
As you can probably tell by now, a good VPN opens access to content around the world. For use outside of the US, the service can help you unblock popular services like Netflix, Hulu, and Pandora. You still need an account for services like Netflix but the VPN will help you watch American shows and movies on Netflix as if you were physically there or in any other region you would like to access.
Stay current on the latest World Cup matches. You can refer to our schedule above for a list of upcoming match ups. Share this post with your friends so they can enjoy the World Cup from anywhere in the world with a VPN. You can also follow us @VPNFan for the latest deals and guides.