The last time Russia played in a World Cup, in Japan and South Korea in 2002, the only way to see a match on your phone was if you lifted up your television and put it on your mobile. Twelve years later, viewers in Russia can watch the games live on their phones, tablets, screens and even that old fashioned television in the corner.
With the World Cup just a day away, Russia is like many other countries gearing up for an orgy of football even if the times of the matches, 8 p.m., midnight and 2 a.m are not the most convenient for local viewers.
Terrestrial channels will show all of the 64 games live, splitting them between Pervy and Rossiya 1 channels. Rossiya 1 starts off with the opening match, Brazil vs Croatia on Thursday and will also show Russia vs Belgium in the group stages. Pervy gets the final and Russia's first game against South Korea next Tuesday and the game against Algeria on June 27. Sport 1 will also show games live while Rossiya 2 will show the games recorded.
New media will play a growing role in coverage of the World Cup. Mobile provider Megafon will screen all the games live to anyone who downloads their Smotri + app and also provide seven minutes highlights for each game. Web site Sportbox.ru will also show all the games live on their web site.
Clubs and bars have also been preparing for the tournament. Traditional sports venues like faux-British pub John Donne have their big screens ready as do other places who normally would turn away a horde of Spartak Moscow fans at the door with a tazer. Solyanka club will show some matches inside but has also set up a veranda in their courtyard. Strelka strelkainstitute.com will again show matches on a big screen in their courtyard but only the semis and the final.
Brazilian fans, Afisha.ru reports, will gather at Corrida on Myasnitskaya Ulitsa or you can head to the only Brazilian restaurant in town, Braziliero.
Other bars that show show soccer matches, even when there is no World Cup on, include Bobby Dazzler a pub near Chistiye Prudy, which is home to local Manchester United fans and so will likely be a hotbed of England supporters; Vagon, in Cherkizovsky stadium, which is favored by Lokomotiv fans; Radio City at Mayakovskaya where Real Madrid fans gather; and one of the oldest sports bars in Moscow, Sport Bar on Novy Arbat.
Arena Sport near Tulskaya metro boasts the largest screen in Moscow at 10 meters by six meters.
June 17: Russia vs South Korea, 2 a.m
June 22: Belgium vs Belgium 8 p.m.
June 27: Algeria vs Russia, midnight
Russia Prepares For World Cup (Photo Gallery)