When USL teams head out on the road during the season, it doesn’t mean it’s all quiet on the home front for supporters. In fact, local watch parties have become events of their own for the USL and other clubs across North America as fans come together to watch the game with friends over drinks and food.
With the rise of soccer bars across the United States and Canada, there are numerous excellent local establishments where fans can raise a glass while watching their team compete in another part of the country. Here are five that bring a festive atmosphere throughout the season.
Photo courtesy Louisville City FC
BoomBozz has been the home for many of Louisville City FC’s watch parties over the past three seasons, and now with the club’s new partnership with Falls City Beer providing a club-themed option on draft the watch party has become even more enlivened. Located a little over 10 minutes from Slugger Field, the combination of pizza and beer goes perfectly with a game on a few of the big screens dotted around the main viewing room.
Photo courtesy Sacramento Republic FC
Located in downtown Sacramento, not too far from the state capital, DeVere’s has been a major meeting point for Sacramento fans since the club was established to watch the team on the road. As one of the club’s partners, fans can take advantage of food and drink specials when Republic FC is in action, and the staff is hospitable to out-of-towners, too, welcoming the USL Cup for a visit ahead of the 2014 USL Cup Final at Papa Murphy’s Park.
Photo courtesy Tulsa Roughnecks FC
ONEOK Field may now be home to the biggest outdoor bar in Oklahoma, but when Tulsa Roughnecks FC is on the road the Roustabouts and others gather at Empire Bar to watch the action. Located less than two miles from the Roughnecks’ home venue in the Cherry Street District, Empire has been a firm favorite for soccer fans in the city to watch international games as well.
Rhinehaus has become the place to be for FC Cincinnati away games – when the club’s supporters groups aren’t making their presence felt on the road in person – with Die Innenstadt making the German Beer Garden its home away from home at Nippert Stadium. Less than a 15-minute drive south from FCC’s home stadium, Rhinehaus doesn’t only cater to FC Cincinnati fans, but soccer fans of all stripes; check out the sweet wooden Premier League standings installment inside the bar.
The International Tap House in the Soulard district of St. Louis has been the St. Louligans’ home away from Toyota Stadium – Saint Louis for a number of years. Given the number of taps on hand – 44 – and hundreds of bottled beers available, it’s not difficult to see why. The bar has also been an award-winner, being named as a Top 100 Craft Beer Bar by Draft Magazine in 2014, making it a perfect place to enjoy a drink while cheering Saint Louis FC on when the team’s away from home.