How to watch the World Cup finals: live stream every game from anywhere

live stream world cup finals 2018 from russia

Wow! Well it was worth waiting for wasn't it? The Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup has kicked off in style. There's been goals galore (from the host-nation Russia, no less), VAR controversy, giant killings, last gasp winners and an epic Portugal vs Spain first round thriller that will live long in the memory. If you don't want to miss any more of the action, you can find out how to live stream every last joyous, heartbreaking minute of the World Cup absolutely free and regardless of where you live.

The FIFA World Cup 2018 - where and when

Russia is the somewhat controversial host nation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals. It will take place over 64 matches, in 16 venues, across 13 cities - from Kaliningrad to Yekaterinburg.

The first game - the hosts Russia vs Saudi Arabia -  kicked off on Thursday June 14 with the tournament lasting a day over one month. The World Cup final takes place in Moscow on Sunday July 15.

This edition of the World Cup tournament sees 32 teams square off for a chance to lift the famous 18 carat gold trophy. Among them are the hosts Russia of course, current champions Germany, previous winners England, France, Spain, Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay, and other favourites including Belgium, Portugal and Croatia.

We've got a list of the upcoming Russia 2018 games below (with links to our dedicated live stream guides) and you can scroll to the bottom of this page for more tips about how to enhance your FIFA World Cup joy.

But you probably don't need too much preamble. You just want to know where you'll be able to watch the games. We understand. So without any further ado, we'll tell you exactly where you can watch the FIFA World Cup matches where you live. And if you're looking for a free live stream, we've got that key information for you, too.

Use a VPN to watch the World Cup 2018 from anywhere for FREE

You don't have to miss a single minute of World Cup soccer - even if the country where you are isn't broadcasting certain games. Because every second of action is being shown somewhere (the UK, for example, is televising every game for free - see below), you can simply use a VPN to login to a region that is broadcasting the game. And it's really easy to do:

1. Download and install a VPN
We've tested all of the major VPN services and we rate ExpressVPN as the absolute best. It's compatible with all of your devices, supports most streaming services and ranks amongst the fastest. You can even install it on devices like an Amazon Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Xbox and PlayStation. So for a one-stop shop, you can't go wrong with Express - but there are more fantastic VPN options out there as well:

The best 3 VPNs for streaming sports online
1. ExpressVPN:  the best all-round VPN for streaming, comes with 30-day trial and/or 15 months for the price of 12
2. VyprVPN:  a 40% discount and blazing speeds make VyprVPN a great choice for 4K - and during the World Cup, it's giving you the chance to win a PS4 + FIFA 18 when you sign up
3. IPVanish supports up to 10 devices, so great on the go and has 25% off for the World Cup

2. Connect to the appropriate server location
Simply open the VPN app, hit 'choose location' and select the appropriate location - it's super easy to do. If in any doubt, just head straight to the UK.

3. Go to the broadcaster's live stream or TVPlayer.com
If you know exactly what station you're hoping to catch the game on, then you don't need us any longer - head straight there. If you're not sure, just stick with TVPlayer.com in the UK. It will be showing all the games.

Want to record the game and catch it in your spare time? TVPlayer Plus carries a £5.99 monthly fee but let' you 'record' up to 10 hours of TV to watch at your leisure. And you can take advantage of its 14-day free trial, too.

World Cup kick-off times and channels

These are the World Cup matches coming up, the times to tune in and the channel to watch in the UK (times in BST):

Tuesday 19 June

Colombia vs Japan (Group H) - Saransk - 1pm - BBC

Poland vs Senegal (Group H) - Moscow (Spartak) - 4pm - ITV

Russia vs Egypt (Group A) - St Petersburg - 7pm - BBC

Wednesday 20 June

Portugal vs Morocco (Group B) - Moscow (Luzhniki) - 1pm - BBC

Uruguay vs Saudi Arabia (Group A) - Rostov-on-Don - 4pm - BBC

Iran vs Spain (Group B) - Kazan - 7pm - ITV

How to stream the World Cup live in the UK 

The UK's two main free-to-air channels are sharing out the World Cup coverage very fairly indeed, with an equal number of group stage and knockout games and live coverage of the World Cup final on both channels. That obviously means you can make the most of their respective iPlayer and ITV Hub apps if you're looking to watch on your phone or tablet, too.

If you can't be bothered faffing about finding out what matches are on which channel, just head to TVPlayer.com instead (or, you know, cast your eyes right for a moment). That hosts all UK freeview channels, so you can just easily click on whichever one is showing the match.

Abroad for the World Cup but still want the UK coverage, then grab a VPN and follow the instructions above.

How to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018: US live stream 

Fox Sport is the official US broadcaster, with a menu of football every morning during the group stages. Assuming you have cable, you'll be able to watch every single World Cup 2018 match on Fox either at home, online or on the network's Fox Go app for tablets and smartphones. If you're a cord cutter, you can alternatively watch on another subscription service such as DirectTV, Sling and Fubo - each of which has a free trial.

Logging in to another nation's broadcast is also a great option using a VPN following the instructions above. So if you love the commentary and coverage in the UK, for example, you can catch  up with that instead.

How to watch FIFA World Cup 2018: Canada live stream 

CTV/TSN is the official Canada broadcaster, so you can spend this summer dividing your time between watching the football and praying that you'll qualify for the 2022 tournament for the first time since 1986. The CTV Go app will let you watch...well, on the go.

Not got cable? Well don't get disheartened. Instead, scroll this page upwards and check out how to use a VPN to live stream the free World Cup coverage from another location.

How to live stream the World Cup in Australia

This is a bit of an 'it depends' scenario. The great news is that SBS is showing the semi-finals, final and all the Socceroos games absolutely free - as well as selected games during the group stages. Great news if you only have a passing interest and want to catch the main games.

For everything else, you'll either need a subscription to Optus Sport ($14.99 a month/14-day free trial), which is showing all 64 games of the World Cup finals, or one of our selected VPNs above to watch the free coverage from another nation.

How to watch the FIFA World Cup 2018: New Zealand live stream 

In New Zealand, Sky Sports has won the rights to show the World Cup finals from Russia. That means access via the Sky GO app for subscribers as well.

If you've read the rest of this article, you probably know the alternative route by now. You could give a VPN a try as per the instructions above.

Exclusive World Cup competition with VyprVPN

Win a PlayStation 4 + FIFA 18 with VyprVPN
If you've decided that a VPN is the best way to catch your chosen World Cup live stream but can't quite choose between the hundreds of providers out there, then our exclusive competition may sway you. VyprVPN has clearly got a case of football fever and is giving away a PS4 Slim (1TB) with a copy of FIFA 18 to one lucky winner.

You won't find this competition anywhere else on the web - it's strictly exclusive to TechRadar readers - and if you don't take the top prize, five runners up will receive a free year of Vypr VPN instead. All you need to do is head to the competition page, complete the entry form and you'll be in the prize draw (full terms and conditions can be found on the competition page). It's an open goal!

Where else can I watch the World Cup using a VPN

A VPN will enable you to watch every 2018 World Cup fixture from literally anywhere - even if it isn't being broadcast in that country. So that obviously includes all the competing countries and anywhere else on Earth you might be: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Denmark, Egypt,  England, France, Germany, Iceland, Iran, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, Nigeria, Panama, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, Uruguay and many more!

How to stream all the online action straight to you TV

The ability to live stream all the football to your phone or tablet is undeniably useful - you don't have to miss a single goal, even if you're out of the house. But if you want to stream the World Cup from the internet to your TV, then picking up a streaming box might be useful. Check out our guide to the best streaming media players, where the likes of Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire are all included.

Catch the match in 4K

UK-broadcaster the BBC has announced that it will show all of its World Cup finals matches in glorious 4K via its iPlayer platform. So great news if your living room is home to a 4K TV set. This is also available via the iPlayer app on PlayStation 4 Pro consoles.

But it's worth noting that the trial is on a first-come, first-served basis as the BBC is continuing to run the World Cup in 4K experiment as a trial for now. And many viewers have already complained about dodgy UHD coverage via iPlayer.

Image courtesy of fifa.com

TechRadar's World Cup coverage is brought to you in association with Honor.

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