As many visitors to Rome will attest, this historic Italian city is one that loves its sport. Whether it’s Serie A football at the Stadio Olimpico or Six Nations rugby, sports fans line the streets of Rome annually for some of the best live sporting events in the country. Consequently, these events are some of the hottest tickets in town, and they can be hard to get your hands on.
Fortunately, if you can’t secure tickets for the big game, Rome has a great selection of atmospheric sports bars that will allow you to watch your favourite sports live in the company of other sports fanatics. They don’t just cover the live games in and around Rome either. Whether you’re wondering whether the New England Patriots will keep up their recent form to win the next Super Bowl LIV or if Manchester City will continue their superiority in the English Premier League, you can keep up-to-date with most of the world’s major league sports in Rome.
Abbey Theatre: A stone’s throw from Piazza Navona
This sizeable Irish-themed pub is just a short walk from Piazza Navona. It’s a thriving sports bar, with a great mix of cultures socialising here, including the locals, the Irish, the British and the Americans. If you want a place that covers all the major sporting action, Abbey Theatre’s 14 big screens should suffice. There are also plenty of delicious and homely Irish and Italian snacks, traditional whiskeys and long drinks to get stuck into.
There are plenty of little intimate nooks and side rooms to sit in and soak up the live sport away from the hubbub of activity at the bar. It’s also open late at night until 3am on Friday and Saturday nights, which is handy for catching live sport further afield in the U.S. and Asia.
Highlander Pub: Scottish-run pub with beer pong tournaments aplenty
Run by Scottish landlords, the Highlander’s Pub is great fun to share with friends and Roman locals alike. It’s just a 20-minute walk from The Vatican and has an excellent choice of craft beers on tap. Speaking of beer, the pub also runs regular beer pong tournaments to while away the pre-match hours before the excitement begins.
It’s also a haven for American Football fanatics; the Highlander’s Pub is fully-equipped to broadcast five NFL matches simultaneously on gameday. If you fall in love with this place, you can even get your very own branded Highlander t-shirt, which is often given away for free when you buy a four-pint pitcher or other promotional drinks.
Druid’s Rock: Choose from a dozen big-screen TV viewing points
Ideal for stag groups, Druid’s Rock is another hugely popular Irish sports bar in Rome. Whether it’s the foosball and pool tables or the 12 or more big-screen televisions dotted throughout the pub, Druid’s Rock is a pilgrimage for many sports fans in central Rome. If the weather is beautiful, this place has an extensive patio area where you can watch one of the wall-mounted TV screens outside and soak up the sunshine and the quintessential views of the nearby Santa Maria Maggiore church.
The Bulldog Inn: Great atmosphere for the 20-something crowd
The Bulldog is one of the most popular English-speaking pubs in Rome—ideal for sports fans of British or American origin looking for a place to watch their favourite stars. It’s got a very young crowd in the evenings, with resident DJs playing their music from 10pm nightly. However, there are plenty of locals who enjoy the live sport in the afternoon and early evening. There are plentiful TV screens to choose from and a great choice of live Sky Sports and ESPN channels covering action from both sides of the Atlantic.
Four Green Fields: Enough capacity for hundreds
If you want a sports bar that offers a hint of Roman tradition as well as your typical pub atmosphere, look no further than Four Green Fields. It has seating capacity for over 180 people, making this a go-to place for patriotic sports fans at big events like World Cups and European Championships. Although this place is another Irish pub, there’s a host of traditional Roman meals and snacks up for grabs that one can enjoy alongside a pint of the black stuff, if you want to dip your toe into Roman culture.
In Rome, not even holidays and sightseeing can get in the way of your catching the big game. If you need a fix of live sport during your stay in Rome, this quality quintet of sports bars will more than serve you well.