With just days to go before England begin their Euro adventure panic may be starting to kick in if you haven’t yet nailed down a venue for their opening game v Russia and beyond.
Have no fear though because those kindly chaps at Farah menswear anticipated this happening and through their #Matchready campaign commissioned a comprehensive study undertaken by The Thinking Drinkers to determine the best pub in your area to shout loudly at the telly that Sterling should really have taken on his full-back there. He would have if he was still with Liverpool.
The comprehensive (hic) research by Ben McFarland and Tom Sandham aka the Thinking Drinkers focused their evaluations on the best audio-visual experience and atmosphere but also factored in the classic criteria that creates a proper pub – a wide range of well-kept beers, friendly and informed staff, great service, tasty food and a strong selection of snacks.
Their ultimate nationwide winner, after reviewing over 2000 boozers and bars all told, was The Water Poet in Spitalfields, London which was described as ‘the Joe Hart of pubs, a safe pair of hands and a City favourite.’
Summing up the venture McFarland, triple crowned Beer Writer of the Year and former Guardian football journalist, said: “If you’re not lucky enough to have secured a ticket for EURO 2016 in France this summer, finding the perfect pub is essential. We’ve scoured the country to find the best boozers to support your home nation.”
In The Water Poet they have unearthed an absolute diamond with nine indoor and outdoor screens ensuring fans never miss a minute of the action, every single match shown, and 15 real ales, craft beers and lagers helping take the edge off England’s quarter final exit on pens.
So that’s London sorted. But what about the rest of the UK? Below you’ll find the most football-friendly homes-from-home that are a sharable cab away for most.
Manchester – The Tib Street Tavern
This slick Northern Quarter favourite is embracing the Euros with gusto laying on booths with televisions and bespoke burgers tailored around each participating nation.
Liverpool – Camp and Furnace
Set in the uber-cool Baltic triangle this extremely popular venue is offering a phenomenal ‘Fanpark experience’ using its enormous warehouse space to great effect with long Oktoberfest-style trestle tables and the biggest screens in the city.
Dublin – The Back Page
A football fantasia with four big screens and a projector and plenty of entertainment to liven up half-time lulls including FIFA, DJs, and astroturf laid in the garden.
Belfast – The Hudson Bar
The eight screens mean you won’t be looking under a giant’s armpit to see Michael O’Neill’s men take on the continent’s elite while the eclectic selection of whiskys are a draw too.
Sheffield – Picture House Social
Games are shown in a state-of-the-art mini-cinema room (kitted out by none other than the British Film Institute) so if you’re like us and believe that football truly is art you know where to go.
Birmingham – The Lord Clifden
Based in the city’s famous Jewellery Quarter this ‘bostin venue hosts ace barbeques while the Banksy art on the walls will make you feel somewhat cultured as you tearfully hug your best mate and claim Harry Kane as your own.
Brighton – Lion and Lobster
A back-street gem with nooks and crannies and a roof terrace. Situated a short stroll from the sea means you can walk off their amazing food after the game too. Just don’t mention the play-offs.
Newcastle – The Strawberry
A Tardis of a sportsbar set just a Coloccini clearance from St James’ Park the ‘Strawb’ will be jumping for the England games with a local mathematician calculating that it will be 1000% better than sitting at home with a few tinnies.
Bristol – The Navy Volunteer
Affectionately known as the ‘Volley’ by locals this 17th century townhouse pub came highly recommended by bartenders in the area. Its craft ales will liven up even Albania v Switzerland.
Farah menswear #MatchReady campaign is helping style conscious fans prepare for EURO 2016. To find your local #MatchReady pub visit http://www.farah.co.uk/blog?post=the-ultimate-farah-pub-guide