Eight football podcasts to get you in the mood for World Cup Qatar 2022

Ex-players, TV coaches and armchair supporters all pitch in. Here are some of the most popular and little-known shows available

Left, Fifa's official podcast Play On mixes sport and music; right, The Forgotten XI explores the history of the women's game. Photo: Fifa; Apple Podcasts
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With the World Cup kicking off in Qatar on Sunday, there’s no better time to start brushing up on your football knowledge.

With plenty of suitable podcasts available, including some hosted by famous names and former players, whether you want to listen to up-to-date chats about matches and signings, are looking to dive into the history of the sport or prefer to get all of the dressing room gossip straight from the horse’s (former England international Peter Crouch's) mouth, there’s one for you.

1. After the Whistle

In time for the World Cup, Apple has launched a new podcast hosted by Ted Lasso’s Brendan Hunt, who plays Coach Beard in the hit show, and NBC Sports’ Rebecca Lowe.

Created to provide an “an entertaining and informative take” on all the action from Qatar, the podcast will go live on Thursday.

Several episodes will be released weekly, with Hunt and Lowe providing post-match analysis and opinions. Expect plenty of drama when Hunt's USA face off against Lowe's England next Friday.

2. Fifa PlayOn Podcast

Fifa’s podcast is the place to find interviews with footballing legends, expert analysis and a deep dive into some of the beautiful game’s most famous (and infamous) moments.

Hosted by former England women’s footballer and pundit Eniola Aluko and Spanish-German singer-songwriter Alvaro Soler, the pair discuss all things football, adding a musical slant as A-list guests not only reminisce on their time on the pitch, but also on their favourite music moments, players and goals from past World Cups.

3. Football Weekly

As the name suggests, this podcast from UK newspaper The Guardian keeps listeners up to date with everything that’s going on in the world of football.

Hosted by presenter Max Rushden and featuring a rolling rota of journalists, sports reporters and footballers, the podcast has been running since 2006.

The most recent episode focuses on the recently named World Cup squads, while weekly offerings look at what’s going on in English football as well as abroad, including Spain's La Liga, Italy's Serie A and Germany's Bundesliga.

4. Sporting Jibberish

Selling itself as “two amateur, avid and ageing sports enthusiasts discussing and debating their sporting ‘knowledge’. But what do we know?”, this podcast is made by two UAE residents and covers and array of sports, but with a focus on football.

Covering the weekly goings on in the Premier League, hosts Stuart and Jack discuss transfers, match results and the latest news with a heavy slant on their “beloved Liverpool and Spurs”.

5. That Peter Crouch Podcast

The former England player launched his eponymous podcast with co-host Chris Stark in 2018 and it’s now in its eighth season.

For tidbits and bon mots, they don’t come more insider than Peter Crouch revealing “what goes on in a dressing room full of millionaire footballers” or finding out “what really happens on a Premier League substitutes’ bench”.

Thanks to his 42 England caps and years spent playing for Tottenham, Aston Villa and Liverpool among others, Crouch is perfectly placed to share his experiences and welcoming famous faces into the studio.

6. The Forgotten XI

While men’s football has dominated for centuries, women’s football has enjoyed a global surge in popularity over the past decade.

This podcast hosted by Chris McGlynn follows the history of women’s involvement in the game from the 1800s all the way up to current stars such as the USA’s Megan Rapinoe and England captain Leah Williams.

McGlynn not only serves up fascinating episodes on the English FA’s ban on women’s football and what happened to Afghanistan’s women’s team, he doesn't avoid the inescapable politics involved in women’s sport.

7. Soccernostalgia Talk Podcast

If you like your sports podcasts to come in five-course meal sizes as opposed to short bite-sized chunks then this offering from Shahan Petrossian (the "soccer" fan) and Paul Whittle (the "football" fan) is for you.

The pair hail from opposite sides of the pond and host guests including authors and journalists. They shoot the breeze on anything from the Denmark team during the 1979/80 season to the history of the game in Colombia.

8. Caught Offside

Former ESPN pundits Andrew Gundling and JJ Devaney have been hosting their podcast since 2014, recently moving from the sports network to Acast.

The pair round up all the news you might have missed or want to dig deeper into from the international leagues, World Cup and Major League Soccer.

Delving into the big matches, they also discuss VAR, the Super League controversy and debate the strengths and weaknesses as nations unveil their World Cup squads.

Scroll through the gallery below to see football fans arriving in Qatar ahead of the World Cup

Updated: November 17, 2022, 5:11 AM