How to watch free Japan vs Spain live stream, plus match preview, team news and kick-off time for the World Cup 2022

Japan vs Spain live stream
Spain celebrate a goal at World Cup 2022 (Image credit: Getty Images)

Japan vs Spain live stream and match preview, Thursday 1 December, 7pm GMT

Japan vs Spain live stream and match preview

Looking for a Japan vs Spain live stream? We've got you covered. Japan vs Spain is free on ITV1 and the ITV Hub in the UK. Brit abroad? Use a VPN to watch World Cup 2022 free (opens in new tab) from anywhere.

A draw would be enough for Spain to advance to the knockout phase, but only a win would guarantee their progression as group winners.

Japan must beat Luis Enrique's side to be sure of a top-two finish, although they could advance with a draw if Germany and Costa Rica also draw.

The stakes will be high at the Khalifa International Stadium as Group E comes to a conclusion.

Kick-off is at 7pm GMT. Make sure you know how to watch World Cup 2022 (opens in new tab) wherever you are.

Team news

Hajime Moriyasu left some of the most talented members of the Japan squad (opens in new tab) on the bench against Costa Rica and has done so again this time. Brighton forward Kaoru Mitoma, Monaco's former Liverpool attacker Takumi Minamino and Arsenal defender Takehiro Tomiyasu are all substitutes for the game against Spain on Thursday.

Luis Enrique has plenty of talent in his Spain squad (opens in new tab) and the former Barcelona coach makes a number of changes to his side. Alvaro Morata gets his first start after scoring in both of Spain's game so far, while Barcelona's Alejandro Balde comes in at left-back, Villarreal's Pau Torres is included at centre-back alongside Manchester City's Rodrigo and Athletic Club forward Nico Williams is also in the XI. 

As it is, we can expect a strong line-up from La Roja, for whom Alvaro Morata is hoping to start for the first time in Qatar.

Japan XI: Gonda; Taniguchi, Yoshida, Itakura, Nagatomo; Morita, Ito; Tanaka, Kamada, Kubo; Maeda.

Spain XI: Unai Simon; Azpilicueta, Rodri, Pau Torres, Balde; Busquets, Pedri, Gavi; Nico Williams, Alvaro Morata, Olmo.


Japan stunned Germany with a 2-1 victory on matchday one, before a hugely disappointing 1-0 loss to Costa Rica last time out.

Spain thrashed Costa Rica 7-0 in their first match and then drew 1-1 with Germany at the weekend.


Victor Gomes of South Africa will be the referee for Japan vs Spain. You can find out more about the World Cup 2022 referees here (opens in new tab).


Japan vs Spain will be played at the Khalifa International Stadium in Al Rayyan. Take a look at all of the World Cup 2022 stadiums (opens in new tab) and see how it ranks.

Players to watch / key battles

As ever, Spain will dominate possession, defend with a high line and press from the front. 

Their wingers will offer a threat in behind, while quick combinations in the final third could produce chances.

Japan are a technically proficient team who dominate possession in World Cup qualifying, but they will predominantly play on the break here.

Read more about the full Japan and Spain full World Cup 2022 squads (opens in new tab).

Group E table

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Group E table
Costa Rica21103

Kick-off and channel

Japan vs Spain kick-off is at 7pm GMT on Thursday 1 December in the UK. The game is free to watch on ITV1 and ITV Hub.

In the US, kick-off time is 2pm ET / 11am PT. The match will be shown on FOX/FS1 in the US. See below for international broadcast options.

VPN guide

Use a VPN to watch World Cup 2022 football from outside your country

If you’re out of the country for the World Cup 2022, then you won't be able to watch on your domestic streaming service as usual. The broadcaster knows where you are because of your IP address (boo!) and blocks you from watching it. You can use a VPN to get around that, though, without resorting to illegal feeds you’ve found on Reddit.

A Virtual Private Network (VPN), assuming it complies with your broadcaster’s T&Cs, creates a private connection between your device and t'internet, meaning the service can’t work out where you are and will let you watch. And all the info going between is entirely encrypted, anonymous and safe – and that's a result.

There are plenty of good-value options out there. For the World Cup 2022, FourFourTwo currently recommends:

ExpressVPN (opens in new tab)

ExpressVPN including a 30-day, money-back guarantee (opens in new tab)
FourFourTwo’s brainy office mates TechRadar love its super speedy connections, trustworthy security and the fact it works with Android, Apple, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, PS5 and loads more. You also get a money-back guarantee, 24/7 support and it's currently available for a knockdown price. Go get it!

VPN legal disclaimer for Premier League live stream

(Image credit: Future)

International World Cup 2022 TV rights

All of the games in the UK are either on the BBC or ITV.

Fox are the World Cup rights holders in the States. Games are on Fox or FS1 cable channels.

If you don't have cable, you can use services such Sling and FuboTV to get the Fox channels. You can also watch the games on Peacock TV with Spanish commentary.

TSN is showing every game. You can subscribe for direct streaming or get it as part of your cable package.

  • TSN (opens in new tab) ($19.99/mon or $199.90/year)

As in the UK, coverage of the World Cup 2022 is entirely free to air. You can watch all 64 games on the SBS TV channel and stream it online too with SBS On Demand.

New Zealand
Paid provider Sky Sports are the World Cup 2022 rights holders in New Zealand. You can watch as part of your Sky subscription of pick up a Sky Now TV pass. There is also a 7-day free trial.

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Greg Lea

Greg Lea is a freelance football journalist who's filled in wherever FourFourTwo needs him since 2014. He became a Crystal Palace fan after watching a 1-0 loss to Port Vale in 1998, and once got on the scoresheet in a primary school game against Wilfried Zaha's Whitehorse Manor (an own goal in an 8-0 defeat).