watching Live sport in London

Watching Sport in London

London is the home of sport arguably in the world. The city has hosted 3 Olympic games (1908, 1948 and 2012), hosted a Football World Cup (1966) at Wembley in which England won, and on top of this, its home to four famous and iconic stadiums; Lords (cricket), Twickenham (Rugby Union), Wembley (Football) and Wimbledon (Tennis). The city also boasts the worlds oldest sporting event, Doggett's Coat and Badge Rowing race held every year along the Thames since 1715!

 

Football

League Football (Premiership, Championship, League 1 and League 2)

London currently has 7 teams playing in the Premiership:  Arsenal, Chelsea, Crystal Palace, Fulham, TottenhamWatford and West Ham.   

The other professional football teams in London include: Brentford, Charlton, Millwall, Queens Park Rangers and AFC Wimbledon.

The football season for the 4 leagues runs from the start of August to May. In addition to the league season, English clubs compete in 2 knockout tournaments. The English League Cup and the Football Association Cup. The top clubs in the Premiership have 2 European tournaments they can qualify for: The Champions League and UEFA Cup.

 

International Football

English Home games are played at Wembley throughout the year on the recognised International competition dates. London regularly plays host to other international teams at smaller venues e.g Australia, USA, Nigeria etc. It can be worth looking out for these games.

 

Getting Tickets for Games

Tickets for games are sold through the clubs (Links above) and with some of the more popular clubs you may need to obtain a membership to get access to tickets. Alternatively you can try ticket selling sites such as ViagogoGet Me In or Live Football Tickets

Tickets for England games go to TheFA website.

 

Rugby Union

England Rugby

England Rugby days are a fun day out even if you can't get a ticket to the game with many pubs brimming. England matches are split into two seasons. The first being the Autumn Internationals played during November time against teams outside Europe. They then compete in the annual Six Nations tournament which commences the start of February until the end of March. To get tickets try the England Rugby website.

London boasts two professional rugby teamsHarlequins (Play at the Stoop in Twickenham) and Saracens (Allianz Park near Edgware). Tickets can be found on the teams websites.

 

Cricket

England Cricket

England has two grounds that hosts international cricket fixtures, Lords and Oval. Test Matches, One Day Internationals and Twenty/20 matches are played at these venues between May and September. To obtain tickets go to the highlighted venues above. Tickets for some series sell out quite quickly so you may need to apply for tickets well in advance where you will be put in a ballot.

Middlesex (Lords) and Surrey (Oval) compete in the County Championship playing matches regularly from May until September. 

 

Tennis

Tennis season comes to London mid June to mid July, starting with the Queens Club Championship which is a lead in tournament to the world famous and most prestigious Wimbledon tournament. To get tickets to Wimbledon you will either need to enter into a Ballot (this can be done on through their website) or queue at the gate. if you seeking centre court tickets for Wimbledon you will need to queue very early. Strawberries and Cream at Wimbledon should be on everyones bucket list. The best tennis players come to London again in November when they play in the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2.

 

Athletics

London hosts two big athletic events every year. In April the street get shuts down for a Sunday as thousands run the London Marathon to raise money for charity while many more attend in support of the their friends. The second big event held annually in July is the Diamond League which brings together some of the world's best track and field athletes to compete in a short athletics carnival.

 

Rowing

London hosts two historic rowing events the Oxford vs Cambridge Boat Race held either later March or early April and then July/August the world's oldest sporting event the Doggett's Coat & Badge Race takes place. For those that love a social occasion, dress your best and experience the Henley Regatta held in July every year. You can buy tickets to Henley but you can still enjoy the event for free with many food and drink stalls set up aong the river for those who want to enjoy the event without tickets.

 

Horse Racing

London while not home to a horse racing track benefits from being surrounded by quite a few, so venturing out for a day at the races is a relatively easy commute. The Epsom Derby, dubbed the people's race is held annually towards the end of May/early June with a huge section reserved for those wishing to attend which is free.  The premier horse racing event of the year is the Royal Ascot Racing Festival that runs for 5 days during June. If you are looking for something to do during Boxing Day, Kempton Park runs an annual Winter Horse Racing Festival. 

 

Polo

Polo in the Park if you haven't experienced a day out at the polo this event is designed for you. Held in Hurlingham Park, Fulham every June people descend on the area dressed in their best to experience how toffs live. The days is about drinking, partying with polo in the background. 

 

Cycling

Ride London is a 100km cycle starting in London heading to Surrey and then back again. For those who like challenging themselves on a bike this is your chance to follow in the foot steps of the Olympians as well as raise money for charity.

 

American Football

NFL has been coming to London for ten years and grown in popularity with now 4 games selling out at Twickenham/Wembley stadiums. 

 

Motor Racing

Formula 1 Grand Prix. Every July Formula 1 comes to England and Silverstone. The race track is situated in between Northampton and Milton Keynes. The journey from London Euston takes 30-40 minutes and then another 30 minutes on a shuttle bus to the track. 

 

Major Sporting Events by Month

January

Darts World Darts Championship (Alexandra Palace)

Snooker Masters (Alexandra Palace)

 

February

Rugby Union Six Nations

Football English Football League Final (Wembley Stadium)

 

March

Rugby Union Six Nations

Rowing Oxford vs Cambridge Boat Race (Thames Putney Bridge to Chiswick)

 

April

London Marathon 

 

May

Football: FA Cup (Wembley Stadium)

Golf BMW PGA Championship (Wentworth, Virginia Water Surrey)

Rugby Union Premiership Final (Twickenham)

 

June

Horse Racing Epsom Royal Derby (Epsom Downs Racecourse)

Rugby Union London 7's (Twickenham)

Polo Polo in the Park (Hurlingham Park, Fulham)

Tennis Aegon Championship (Queens Club)

Horse Racing Royal Ascot (Ascot Racecourse)

 

July

Tennis Wimbledon 

Rowing Henley Regatta (Thames, Henley)

Motor Racing British Formula 1 (Silverstone)

 

August

Triathlon London Triathlon

 

September

American Football NFL (Wembley/Twickenham)

 

October

American Football NFL (Wembley/Twickenham)

 

November

Rugby Union Autumn Internationals (Southern Hemisphere vs. Northern Hemisphere)

Tennis: ATP World Tour Finals (The O2 London)

 

December

Darts World Darts Championship (Alexandra Palace)

Horse Racing Winter Festival (Kempton Park) 

 

Quirky Story/Fact about Sport in London

The FA Cup is the worlds oldest football competition having commenced in 1871 and the third oldest football tournment in the world (among all codes) behind Aussie Rules and Rugby Union which have traditional school fixture tournaments going since 1858. Wanderers are the 4th most successful London team to have won the tournament having won it 5 times. They are behind Arsenal (13), Tottenham (8), Chelsea (7) and ahead of West Ham (3), Charlton (1), Wimbledon-now MK Dons (1) and Clapham Rovers (1). Clapham Rovers have won  the FA Cup once more than QPR, Fulham (London's oldest professional football club founded 1879), Brentford, Millwall, Luton Town, AFC Wimbledon, Watford and Leyton Orient. 

The most successful and famous person to have a statue at Fulham FC is pop star Michael Jackson. The statue brought luck having been bought and placed their by owner Al-Fayed, it was removed at the start of the 2014 season by Fulham's new owner a year in which they got relegated from the Premier League. 

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