It’s on: The Observer’s World Cup Schedule

Nigeria vs. South Korea

2:30 p.m.

6-22-2010

ESPN2, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: South Korea breezed through qualifying and have Manchester United player Park Si-Jung, but the South Koreans face a strong Nigerian squad with the experienced players Chinedu Obasi and captain Joseph Yobo.

Where Nigeria fans should watch: Mirage Restaurant at 21-43 Cortelyou Road in Flatbush, Brooklyn. It offers some of the city’s best fufu-a plantain-based sticky substance dipped in soup or sauce and consumed sans utensils-alongside a showing of the afternoon game.

Where South Korea fans should watch: Song 7.2 at 117 Second Avenue. It provides South Korea fans ideal bar food in the form of a long list of Korean tapas, including red-chili chicken wings. But what makes Song an even more attractive choice for World Cup viewing: its drink specials, like the $20 five-beer or four-sake special.

 

 

Greece vs. Argentina

2:30 p.m.

6-22-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com

The rivalry: With star players like Lionel Messi, Argentina is a favorite to win, but the experienced Greek squad has a penchant for upsets-like at the 2004 European Championship, when the team nabbed the title.

Where Greece fans should watch: Omonia, at 32-20 Broadway in Bayridge, Brooklyn, or at 7612 Third Avenue in Astoria, Queens. This Greek eatery will air all Greek matches and offers a special at the Astoria location-buy three drinks and get one free.

Where Argentina fans should watch: Novecento 900 at 343 West Broadway. Novecento has locations worldwide, including Buenos Aires. The restaurant will have a $20 breakfast menu for morning games.

 

 

Slovenia vs. England

10 a.m.

6-23-2010

ESPN2, ESPN3.com

The rivalry: England and the United States are the teams to beat in this group. Even if Slovenia manages to advance past Algeria, this game will likely mark the end of the road for the country.

Where Slovenia fans should watch: Manny’s on Second at 1770 Second Avenue. The sports bar features 40 HDTVs and free Wi-Fi, so you won’t get behind on work while you’re keeping up with the match.

Where England fans should watch: Red Lion at 151 Bleecker Street, between Thompson Street and Laguardia Place. This classic English pub offers a continental breakfast for the 7:30 a.m. games.

 

 

United States vs. Algeria

10 a.m.

6-23-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: Algerians will have a tough time beating the favored U.S. team, especially in light of recent shake-ups, like coach Rabah Sadaane’s decision to drop team captain Yazid Mansuri for the Cup opener. The United States also has tired-and-true veterans like Landon Donovan.

Where United States fans should watch: Standings at 47 East Seventh Street, between Second Avenue and Taras Shevchenko Place. Catch the action on one of their eight plasmas. Open for all World Cup games except 7:30 a.m. matches.

Where Algeria fans should watch: Nomad Restaurant, a North African eatery at 78 Second Avenue. Feast on couscous and tajines while watching Algeria take to the pitch.

 

 

Australia vs. Serbia

2:30 p.m.

6-23-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: The Australian team has key players like goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer and midfielder Tim Cahill, but making it out of this group will be tough, and they should have trouble against Serbia’s stellar defense.

Where Australia fans should watch: Nelson Blue at 255 Front Street, between Peck Slip and Dover Street, offers Australian wines and New Zealand beer and specials for each game.

Where Serbia fans should watch: Kafana at 116 Avenue C serves up Serbian fare, perfect for munching on while watching the Serbian squad.

 

 

Ghana vs. Germany

2:30 p.m.

6-23-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: Three-time World Cup winner Germany always has a strong showing, but has struggled in the past two years since losing to France in the Euro finals. Ghana might be a challenge for the Germans; it advanced the furthest of any African team in 2006.

Where Germany fans should watch: Loreley Restaurant and Biergarten, at 7 Rivington Street or 64 Frost Street. Perfect for dining on bratwurst, pork schnitzel and authentic German beers while catching a match.

Where Ghana fans should watch: The Maytex Cafe at 545 Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn is a popular gathering place for Ghanaian expats; it will be showing all World Cup matches on its big-screen TV, along with traditional offerings like egushi, a pumpkin seed and spinach stew, and peanut-sauced goat.

 

 

Slovakia vs. Italy

10 a.m.

6-24-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV,

The rivalry: The match between Slovakia and Italy is one to watch; while the aging Italy squad is the reigning World Cup champion, the recently established Slovakian nation’s team is relatively new on the scene, with 2010 its first World Cup entry since gaining its independence in 1994.

Where Slovakia fans should watch: Zlata Praha Restaurant, at 28-48 31st Street in Astoria, serves authentic Czech and Slovak cuisine and shows its home country’s World Cup matches, attracting many Slovak soccer enthusiasts. The restaurant will be opening its doors in time for the 10 a.m. matches-but not the 7:30 a.m.

Where Italy fans should watch: Trattoria Cinque at 363 Greenwich Street, between Harrison and Franklin streets. In Italy, it’s common for fans to visit local “trattorias,” or casual restaurants before big soccer matches. Trattoria Cinque shows all World Cup games and offers specials for Italy’s contests, such as $1 Peronis and $5 Campari cocktails-if Italy wins.

 

 

Paraguay vs. New Zealand

10 a.m.

6-24-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com

The rivalry: This match-up should prove to be an interesting one-Paraguay, which has qualified for the World Cup four consecutive times, is hungry for a win and a prime candidate for an upset; New Zealand is arguably the biggest long shot in the tournament.

Where Paraguay fans should watch: Stout, at 133 West 33rd Street, is usually apt to put your game on one of its many TVs, no matter how obscure.

Where New Zealand fans should watch: Nelson Blue at 255 Front Street, between Peck Slip and Dover Street. It offers Australian wines and New Zealand beer and specials for each game. If you want to catch a 7:30 game, though, you’re out of luck-Nelson Blue will open for the 10 o’clock games only.

 

 

Denmark vs. Japan

2:30 p.m.

6-24-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: FIFA’s founding squad, Denmark, qualified at the top of its group and come out strong against Japan-which has never won a World Cup on foreign soil, but was the first squad to qualify for the Cup. Another strike against Japan? Its unpopular coach, Takeshi Okada, who said that the Japanese team was aiming to make it to the semifinals, which gained wide public contempt.

Where Denmark fans should watch: Tonic Times Square, located at 727 Fifth Avenue, between 48th and 49th streets, is known as the Dutch soccer house. It opens its doors at 6:30 a.m. for the duration of the tournament and offers drink and food specials during games.

Where Japan fans should watch: Sushi Samba Park, at 245 Park Avenue, between East 19th and 20th streets, or Sushi Samba Seven, at 87 Seventh Avenue, between Barrow and Grove streets, are the perfect places to enjoy some great sushi and soccer. Both locations televise each game and offer World Cup-themed cocktails and food specials during the games.

 

 

Cameroon vs. Netherlands

2:30 p.m.

6-24-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com

The rivalry: Cameroon, widely thought of as Africa’s best shot at a World Cup title, has a physical midfield and is good at counterattack, but the Dutch have been known to pull a few upsets.

Where Cameroon fans should watch: Ponty Bistro at 218 Third Avenue, an East Village French-West African bar and restaurant, will show every World Cup match. The restaurant will offer African beer for $6 as well as two for one martinis for the occasion. 

Where Netherlands fans should watch: Tonic Times Square, located at 727 Fifth Avenue, between 48th and 49th streets, is known as the Dutch soccer house. It opens its doors at 6:30 a.m. for the duration of the tournament and offers drink and food specials during games.

 

 

North Korea vs. Ivory Coast

10 a.m.

6-25-2010

The rivalry: The match between the North Korean underdogs and the strong Ivory Coast squad may be one to watch, since the status of Ivory Coast star striker and captain, Didier Drogba, is still up in the air following a May arm injury.

Where North Korea fans should watch: Song 7.2 at 117 Second Avenue, between Sixth and Seventh streets, serves up cheap, traditional Korean fare and will be airing all the World Cup games.

Where Ivory Coast fans should watch: Les Enfant Terribles at 37 Canal Street. It opens at 7:30 am every day of the Cup, offering free sandwiches, specialty cocktails and a redecorated interior each morning.

 

 

Portugal vs. Brazil

10 a.m.

6-25-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: Brazil, winner of the 2002 World Cup, is in a tough group for this year’s Cup, but still a favorite against Portugal, whose biggest asset is Cristiano Ronaldo.

Where Portugal fans should watch: Portuguese restaurant Macao Trading Company, at 311 Church Street, between Walker and Lispenard streets, is ideal for early-morning games; it has a 10-by-10-foot screen and offers a “FIFA Special”-Portuguese-style sandwiches and a choice of beer, juice or coffee for just $10.

Where Brazil fans should watch: Beco Bar at 45 Richardson Street, between Lorimer Street and Union Avenue in Brooklyn. During the tournament, beers are just $3 and caipirinhas are $5.

 

 

Switzerland vs. Honduras

2:30 p.m.

6-25-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com

The rivalry: A young Swiss team will challenge the Honduras squad, who are out for blood after being eliminated in the first round in 1982-their last World Cup appearance.

Where Switzerland fans should watch: Café Select at 212 Lafayette Street. Have the schnitzel or bratwurst with a World Cup-themed cocktail.

Where Honduras fans should watch: Nevada Smiths at 74 Third Avenue, between 11th and 12th streets. While this isn’t a Honduran home base, the bar is known for its around-the-clock soccer coverage and obscene amount of TVs.

 

 

Chile vs. Spain

2:30 p.m.

6-25-2010

ESPN, ESPN3.com, MobileTV

The rivalry: The confident Spanish squad, the clear favorite of the group, faces off against rival Chile, in Chile’s first World Cup appearance since 1998.

Where Chile fans should watch: Pomaire at 371 West 46th Street; it charges $20 per person for a buffet during Chilean games only.

Where Spain fans should watch: Boqueria at 53 West 19th Street or 171 Spring Street. The Spanish eateries will be showing every game, and from 9:30 a.m. to noon, they will serve a special “World Cup 2010 Menu” featuring churros con chocolate.