Where to watch the NFL in Oxford
September 28, 2010 8:24 AM   Subscribe

Where can I watch American football (NFL) in Oxford, England (or London, for that matter)?

I will be in Oxford, England for the better part of the rest of the NFL season. I have websites where I can watch games online, but I'd rather watch (at least some) games at pubs, preferably with other fans of American football. Where can I do this?

If it's not possible to watch in Oxford, I'm also open to places to watch in London. I'm a New York Jets fan, so if there's any place Jets fans congregate, it would be great to know.

posted by j1950 to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (11 answers total)
Short answer: It's not easy. London has a couple of places. Here they are with advantages and disadvantages:

1. Famous 3 Kings - Dive pub, not a great location, but great staff who are very accomodating to the needs of the fans.

2. Bodeans BBQ - Excellent food, but show usually only show the games that Sky is showing. They close at 11, so you always miss the end of the second game.

3. The Sports Cafe- Think "Sports Disco" good location, touristy, crowded, food and service mediocre. Usually several games on simultaneously, one on the big screen, the rest playing with no volume on various small screens throughout the venue.

None of these places are ideal, but they're the best I've been able to find in the six years that I've lived here.
posted by Optamystic at 8:40 AM on September 28, 2010

The games I've seen in Europe this year have been carried on SkySports4 (I think that's how the name goes), so any pub that's got that will be ABLE to show NFL games. Hope that helps a little too?
posted by knile at 8:47 AM on September 28, 2010

Yeah, that's sort of the problem, Knife. Many pubs have the ability, very few have the willingness to change the channel from soccer to NFL, and even if you can talk the bartender into it, you'll most likely have a tough time with the other patrons.
posted by Optamystic at 8:51 AM on September 28, 2010

You could do worse than ask these guys in Oxford.

But don't get your hopes up. If a pub has satellite TV (NFL is on ESPN) they're more likely to be showing football (soccer).

There was an American themed bar at one point but a bit more digging suggests it's been converted into Briitsh snooker hall chain, Rileys.
posted by MuffinMan at 9:02 AM on September 28, 2010

Seconding Sports Cafe. I (American) was there for the first time a few weeks ago, and found it to be not unlike many local sports bars back home. Optamystic's descriptions of crowds, food and service are spot on, but it's a huge place and they carry a wide selection of games each Sunday.
posted by undercoverhuwaaah at 9:47 AM on September 28, 2010

I watched the Superbowl in The Radcliffe Arms, which is pretty much a sports bar these days. Call ahead, but my experience is that they're usually happy to show anything that's on Sky, provided it doesn't clash with Premier League/European football.
posted by caek at 10:27 AM on September 28, 2010

"I watched the Superbowl in The Radcliffe Arms, which is pretty much a sports bar these days."

Every time I've passed the Radcliffe Arms recently it's looked pretty empty, with no customers or staff in sight. I heard the owners are concentrating on another of their ventures in the city centre.
posted by sandig at 10:47 AM on September 28, 2010

Yeah, I've been out of town for six months or so, and it was up for sale when I left. It was open though.
posted by caek at 10:49 AM on September 28, 2010

Was in London last season. Try and find pubs with "dodgy boxes" . . basically cracked satellite. They should be able to pull down live broadcasts from the US. Cabbies are pretty knowledgeable on the subject. Then there is the matter of convincing. Know your bartender, be a regular and tip well. However you will always get overruled by soccer/rugby fans if they show up . . that's when it pays to have access to a US SlingBox
posted by patrad at 10:49 AM on September 28, 2010

Response by poster: Thank you very much for all your help -- really appreciate it!
posted by j1950 at 1:23 PM on September 28, 2010


This might sound ridiculous, but NFL is on Sky and I've been trying to get into it. I live in Oxford so if you ever want to come round and watch a game give me a shout... I'm gonna be an Eagles fan, I warn you of that up front!
posted by tomw at 8:50 AM on September 29, 2010

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