When it comes to making movies for sports, you want to ensure it comes out incredible adding some creativity here and professionality there, otherwise, the production can turn out cliché or less entertaining.
Sports movies vary from game type, the same is their method of production. While it may seem difficult to make a movie for a sport like wrestling, even harder is making a movie for soccer, a team sport that almost always doesn’t seem to have enough coverage when the focus is either on the team or a few players because you never really get enough from the famous sport.
Soccer has a lot of features which is not entirely covered through film. Even at that, there are some impressive cinema productions of the sport.
In this article, we have compiled a list of the 15 best soccer movies that are entertaining to view and they are listed for listing purposes and not necessarily ranked. Here we GOAL!
- 1 The Best Soccer Movies To Watch In 2024
- 1.1 1. Bend It Like Beckham
- 1.2 2. Green Street Hooligans
- 1.3 3. Escape To Victory
- 1.4 4. Fever Pitch
- 1.5 5. Goal! The Dream Begins
- 1.6 6. Ted Lasso
- 1.7 7. Shaolin Soccer
- 1.8 8. Mean Machine
- 1.9 9. The Damned United
- 1.10 10. The Football Factory
- 1.11 11. The Game Of Their Lives
- 1.12 12. Offside
- 1.13 13. When Saturday Comes
- 1.14 14. Pelé: The Birth of A Legend
- 1.15 15. There’s Only One Jimmy Grimble
- 2 Conclusion
The Best Soccer Movies To Watch In 2024
1. Bend It Like Beckham
Soccer is one of the major pointers in revealing the main motive of this film. Like the title, the movie has little to do with the legendary player, David Beckham, except for acknowledging his professionalism.
Bend It Like Beckham is a story about a girl who is passionate about soccer. The movie explores the themes of sexuality, tradition, and gender stereotypes.
She faces disapproval from her family which she ignores, leading to her breakthrough in the form of recruitment into the local women’s team followed by subsequent events. This movie is arguably one of the best soccer movies of all time.
2. Green Street Hooligans
Elijah Wood stars in the movie as Matt. He faces undeserving rustication from Harvard University, leaving him no choice but to move in with his sister and her husband in England where he learns about the culture of soccer hooliganism when introduced to soccer.
Matt is enlightened about hooliganism which is portrayed in both diverse and commendable ways. In the long run, he learns about himself. The movie is also known as ‘Green Street Hooligans’.
3. Escape To Victory
The 1981 all-star cast movie is one of the oldest movies that is based on the game of soccer. Much like many archaic movies on the plight of war, the movie is one of freedom but with an approach to soccer.
Produced by the late John Huston, it starred legends such as actor Micheal Caine and Sylvester Stallone as well as soccer players: Bobby Moore and Pelé. Escape To Victory was set in the Second World War.
Prisoners of the Nazi sect must play the game against the guards. In the course of this time, the allied team makes for freedom by plotting an escape by means of the game. This movie is one of the soccer movies which is as good a movie as it is good to view.
4. Fever Pitch
Fever Pitch is the 1997 original of the adapted American variation released in 2005 which is based on the game of baseball, with the Boston Red Sox aiming to win the World Series; starring Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore.
This version of Fever Pitch is rather about Arsenal’s league title win in the 1988/1989 season. There is a clash of love and passion as the primary character, Colin Firth, struggles between balancing his new romantic relationship with a woman and fandom for his admired team, Arsenal.
5. Goal! The Dream Begins
Premiered in 2005, Goal! The Dream Begins is regarded as the best of the trilogy in which it is made. It is the first of the trio, which is the story of Santiago Munez, a soccer enthusiast who dreams of playing professional soccer.
Santiago illegally resides in Los Angeles although he’s Mexican. He chooses to pursue his dream as a soccer player amid disapproval from his family.
It pays off when he is recruited to play for Newcastle United, an English team. He faces pressure as he has to prove himself as well as ensure his return to the States is worth it all.
6. Ted Lasso
The soccer film series is based on the character of the same name, Ted Lasso (Jason Sudeikis), an American college Football coach from Kansas City who is employed as coach to a team of English players looking to play in the English Premier League.
Ted is inexperienced in the sport. He makes up for his lack of knowledge with determination and an optimistic demeanor. The series is in its second season and it started in 2020. This TV series can pass for one of the newest soccer movies you can watch in 2022.
7. Shaolin Soccer
The movie is centered around martial arts. Shaolin Soccer is about a Shaolin follower who brings together five childhood friends, trained in the act of martial arts, to form a team of soccer players and use their skill in the game to make Shaolin Kong fu popular. This is another one of the best soccer movies of all time.
8. Mean Machine
Danny Meehan, played by Vinnie Jones, loses his place as team captain of the England national soccer team when he gets banned from the team for game-fixing. He faces even more trials when he gets into a brawl with the police, landing him in prison.
Danny leads a team of inmates to play against the prison’s officials and guards. Mean Machine was released into the cinema in 2001. It is an adaptation of “The Longest Yard”, a 1974 film.
9. The Damned United
In the movie, The Damned United, Brain Clough is determined to outdo his predecessor as manager, but he is unable to make good decisions for the team and he pays the price.
Brain’s tenure as football manager of Leeds United in 1974 was only 44 days in office before he was laid off. His short time in office is central to the movie, while also revealing the politics of soccer and its unpopular working systems underneath.
The movie is one for all in the sense that even non-soccer fanatics can always grasp the plot without soccer knowledge.
10. The Football Factory
Tommy Johnson’s life is shot in a documentary style which is about hooliganism towards soccer.
As a member of the Chelsea Firm, Tommy has little interest in good conduct which for the rest of the movie, we find how his lifestyle of violence, drunkenness, and drug dealing affects his loved ones and ensues in the loss of friends.
The Football Factory is a view of soccer hooliganism based on soccer fans and much to reality through the characters. Tommy rethinks his choice of life.
11. The Game Of Their Lives
The Game Of Their Lives is based on a true story. Although the movie was released in 2005, it was set in 1950; the year the American soccer team defeated England against all odds, in the World Cup, hosted in Brazil.
The movie is a reenactment of the first time a historic victory was won in the US by a team of underdog players. An exceptional focus in the movie is the lives of the underdog team.
The movie revolves around Gender segregation and soccer. A group of Iranian girls is not allowed into the stadium to watch the game they love.
Their experience and plot to gain access and view the game are what Offside explores. They have to find a way to breach the no-female-in-the-stadium policy of Iran. They resolve to disguise themselves as men. The movie is a 2006 release.
13. When Saturday Comes
Jimmy is a heavy drinker who aspires to a soccer career. Like his job in a local brewery, he doesn’t seem to have a clear-cut path to achieving this dream.
There is hope for him when he finds love. His fortune changes for good when a recruiter discovers him and he is featured in the Sheffield United team – his dream team.
Jimmy will make it to the big league if he can battle his drinking dilemma. The movie was released on the big screen in 1996.
14. Pelé: The Birth of A Legend
The movie is a documentary about Pelé, a veteran soccer player, his life and journey to stardom. Pele struggles to support his family between menial jobs in a poor neighborhood in Brazil.
Despite his condition of living, he continued to sharpen his skills in soccer and became the player who won his team victory in the 1958 FIFA World Cup.
15. There’s Only One Jimmy Grimble
Jimmy’s life would be easier if he was a master of the game, but he not only is a misfit, he is a victim of bullying and an admirer of a girl whom he lacks the confidence to approach.
The 15-year-old teen wants to get selected to play for his school’s soccer team, City. When Jimmy makes it to the team, another miracle lands him as the player who scores the winning goal for the team when he is gifted a pair of boots. Life turns around for Jimmy and also those the impact of his confidence reached.
Fans of the round leather game of soccer can derive additional entertainment from these interesting and best soccer movies in 2023. Do well to watch and be entertained.
Ken Anucha studied Information Technology at Sikkim Manipal University. He is a gaming and sports enthusiast whose aim is to keep folks in these spheres thoroughly informed and up-to-date.