The men’s FIFA World Cup 2018 kicks off on Thursday, June 14, in Russia — with 32 teams from around the globe competing for a soccer championship that goes on the line only once every four years.
The 2018 World Cup’s lone opening day match features host Russia versus Saudi Arabia, starting at 11 a.m. ET. Three more soccer matches are scheduled for Friday, June 15, and seven others will be played over the weekend. The World Cup 2018 tournament’s championship match will take place a month later — after several rounds of eliminations — on Sunday, July 15.
American fans, note that the United States did not qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. So don’t tune in expecting to see the men of Team USA in action; they’ll probably be watching from home, just like you.
It is possible to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018 for free, or at least most of it, no matter whether you want to tune in on TV or stream the games online. Fox Sports has the rights for English broadcasts of all games, and they are being aired on a combination of local Fox broadcast stations — which are always free with a digital antenna — and the pay TV channel FS1. The World Cup Spanish broadcasts are available on either Telemundo or NBC Universo. (You may not understand all the commentary, but you can certainly appreciate the announcer’s notable “Gooooooool!” call at every score.)
Below, we’ve listed the 2018 World Cup schedule for the tournament’s opening weekend. But first, here are all the details on how to watch the 2018 FIFA World Cup for free.
How to Watch the 2018 World Cup on TV
If you have satellite or cable TV, simply find your local Fox station or FS1 to watch World Cup games. Even if you don’t have pay TV or don’t have a package with FS1, you can watch the 2018 World Cup matches being broadcast on Fox stations for free: All you need is a digital antenna, which can cost under $30 and provides free, over-the-air broadcasts of networks like ABC and Fox.
You can also watch Spanish broadcasts of the 2018 World Cup on Telemundo for free in most of the country with a digital antenna.
How to Live Stream the 2018 World Cup Online for Free
There are many ways to live stream the 2018 World Cup — and yes, it’s pretty easy to watch soccer online for free.
Every World Cup game can be streamed in English with the Fox Sports Go app. There is no charge for downloading and watching via the app, but you must log in with an appropriate pay TV provider account to get access.
To get the Spanish broadcasts, you can stream World Cup games in any browser at TelemundoDeportes.com, or with the Telemundo Deportes En Vivo or NBC Sports apps. Telemundo says that anyone can watch the World Cup online for free without a pay TV subscription until June 25. After that, you may be prompted to log in online with a pay TV account.
Most live-streaming TV services will also let you watch the World Cup online. Services including Hulu Live, Fubo TV, DirecTV Now, Playstation Vue, Sling TV, and YouTube TV all have packages available with some or all of the channels broadcasting 2018 World Cup matches.
Each of these services has a free trial period, allowing you to watch at no charge for roughly one week. Just remember to cancel the service if you don’t want to pay the monthly fee, which will cost $20 and up.
What Channel Is the 2018 World Cup On?
Here’s the TV broadcast schedule for the 2018 FIFA World Cup’s first four days.
Thursday, June 14
• Russia vs. Saudi Arabia, 11 a.m. ET, on Fox and Telemundo
Friday, June 15
• Egypt vs. Uruguay, 8 a.m. ET, on FS1 and Telemundo
• Morocco vs. Iran, 11 a.m. ET, on Fox and Telemundo
• Portugal vs. Spain, 2 p.m. ET, on Fox and Telemundo
Saturday, June 16
• France vs. Australia, 6 a.m. ET, on FS1 and Telemundo
• Argentina vs. Iceland, 8 a.m. ET, on Fox and Telemundo
• Peru vs. Denmark, 11:30 a.m. ET, on FS1 and Telemundo
• Croatia vs. Nigeria, 2:30 p.m. ET, on FS1 and Telemundo
Sunday, June 17
• Costa Rica vs. Serbia, 8 a.m. ET, on Fox and Telemundo
• Germany vs. Mexico, 11:30 a.m. ET, on FS1 and Telemundo
• Brazil vs. Switzerland, 1:30 p.m. ET, on FS1 and Telemundo