Tuesday, May 5, 2009

How To: Watch Soccer Online

There comes a time in everyone’s life who is either in college, doesn’t have the money to pay for multiple TV packages, or is just too damn lazy, that they want to watch some soccer online. Yes this may mean that you have to watch a game in quality so low the ball disappears into the certain parts of the grass and you have to guess where it is by where the pixilated players are perusing.

But that’s soccer on the internet. Sometimes there is no option but to go online to a place that combines the joy of information with the fun of typing (thanks Jon Stewart). As a former poor college student and now as a young professional still too poor to afford a nice TV and some expensive extended cable there is only one choice: the internet.

Here are the four primary methods of watching games.

MLS Direct Kick
There really isn’t a better deal than MLS Direct Kick. 20 dollars for a full season pass gets you hundreds of games. I love being able to spend a whole Saturday parked on my couch switching from game to game. Sure there are downsides. At times, Direct Kick is incredibly frustrating and annoying. Your team is about to play and for no reason and with no notice the game isn’t there.

Instead of communicating, Direct Kick just takes down the “Watch Live” links and laughs inside their Major League Baseball dugout as Big Soccer goes crazy and fans try to enjoy a game by reading match trackers.

Take advantage of Big Soccer going crazy when the game doesn’t work. Visit both teams in game thread. There is a 90% chance someone will post a link where you can watch it.

Justin TV really is the bomb. If you can’t find a game or it is blacked out on MLS Direct Kick go to Justin TV and search for a team name. Sure you’ll have to listen to the game in Spanish in grainy vision but most of the time that’s waaay better than the American announcers.

Now here is a high quality option. Veetle.com is a high quality streaming service that uses very little bandwidth. I am amazed by how good these games look. There is usually a 24/7 stream of Fox Soccer Channel available as well as spotty coverage of Sentanta sports. Warning: some of these stream seem to have been taken down recently. Keep watching the space though.


I used to visit Myp2p.eu all the time to get live game schedules. They have great links to pretty much every live sport and live game ever. These links almost all use 3rd party streaming tools. You will have varied luck. It’s free of viruses though, and great for international and rare soccer. Oh and if you like rugby they have 24/7 rugby channel.

I don't have the time to watch English Premier League games but I still like to follow along with the rest of the world. That's why every weekend I take two hours to watch Match of the Day and Match of the Day 2. Match of the Day summarizes all the EPL play in just an hour. They do a great job of being droll and still serving up a great review show. Follow my tweets and I'll send you the mininova links every Saturday and Sunday if I'm not too drunk.


Chris said...

For MLS, I think you mean "Match Center". They've renamed it every year, it seems, but I think "Direct Kick" is the pay-per-view cable or satellite subscription thing. I think they cover the same games, so it probably doesn't matter.

Other than those MLS games on Match Center, I prefer Veetle over all others. The quality absolutely blows away stuff like Justin.TV (and MLS Match Center, for that matter). I wouldn't call it low-bandwidth, though. My kids hate it when I watch something on Veetle, because it uses all our bandwidth and slows their online games to a crawl.

Two other options you missed are ESPN360.com. If it's on ESPN2, it's on ESPN360.com. Your ISP has to carry it for it to work for you, though. And lastly, there's USLLive.com. The production quality varies widely, but all the USL-1 games (and then some) are streamed online by the league, for free.

Graham said...

Thanks Chris, you are totally right about Direct Kick. Up till now ESPN360 hasn't been an option for me. I will add your suggestions in. Thank again!

Anonymous said...

Match Center is too frustrating to use, 800k is horrible quality. I really don't understand why Match Center can't be a much better product. MLS uses the same company that helped NBC do the Olympics, Akamai, and they did it in beautiful HD live. I would gladly pay $50 or $60 if that what it takes but they get $0 until they stop streaming "TV Quality 800k" from 1998.

For nationally broadcast MLS matches and all other major leagues, I download of a Usenet sever. It's $11 a month and it's worth ten times that. Anything you ever wanted to watch (TV, sports, movies, anything) is on there and even better, it's fast easy and secure. I max out my down speeds, it's SSL encrypted and I can always find 720P feeds if their avalaible. Here's a good guide:


For live matches atdhe.net has got to be the best bet and for MLS torrents torrents.huntparkinsider.com is the only place worth checking.

Like I said, if MLS provided a quality product, I'd buy but until then, I'll get better quality and reliability for free illegaly

Anonymous said...

The online Direct Kick package is really good. But before I purchased it I used to go to Channelsurfing.net. There are a bunch of other sporting events there as well. I even see some PPV boxing which beats paying 60 bucks for.

Anonymous said...

since myp2p is down I recomend TweTV browser extension for live tv