The best sports movies on Netflix

From inspiring stories to controversial truths about the modern world of sport, find out more about the best sports films and documentaries available to watch online

Prima Squadra: Juventus FC

Netflix truly made its mark in the sports movie world with Icarus, its Oscar-winning documentary about doping and Russian whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov.

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But that movie is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to great sporting stories on Netflix. Find out some of the best sports movies, documentaries and TV shows to watch on Netflix UK here.

The Crown - Matt Smith, Peter Morgan, Claire Foy - Writer/Creator Peter Morgan with Matt Smith (Prince Philip) and Claire Foy (Queen Elizabeth II) (Netflix, TL)

Icarus

Icarus

How did director Brian Fogel discover one of the greatest doping scandals in sport… by accident? That’s the question you keep asking as this remarkable film plays out, with amateur cyclist Fogel first making contact with eccentric Russian scientist Grigory Rodchenkov in order to help him with an experiment to find out just how effective doping can be. From there, the story takes a surreal and disturbing turn – and the ramifications are still being felt today. Watch on Netflix

Read more: “Truth is a banned substance” – the director of Netflix’s Icarus on uncovering the greatest doping scandal in sport


Les Bleus – Un Autre Histoire de France, 1996-2016

Charting 20 turbulent years for the French national football team, taking in the triumph in Paris at World Cup ’98, dissolution in South Africa in 2010, with a few scandals thrown in along the way for good measure. Watch on Netflix


The Gabby Douglas Story (2014)

This moving biopic tells the story of Gabby Douglas, following her throughout her childhood and teenage years, before she becomes the first black gymnast to become the Individual All-Around Champion at the Olympics. Watch on Netflix


Last Chance U

Exhilarating docuseries follwing a group of young, talented American footballers who are striving to land places in the NFL. Watch on Netflix


Team Foxcatcher (2016)

Featuring previously unseen home video, this Netflix Original documentary recounts the true-story of John E Pont’s downward spiral and the murder of Olympic wrestler Dave Schultz. The story was made into a film, Foxcatcher, starring Channing Tatum, Steve Carrell and Mark Ruffalo, in 2014. Watch on Netflix


The Barkley Marathons: the Race that Eats Its Young

An ultramarathon held in the wilds of Tennessee, this is a race with a fearsome reputation. In 2018 nobody – literally no-one – managed to finish the race within the time limit. What strange people would choose to put themselves through it? Well, meet some of them here. Watch on Netflix


First Team: Juventus

Behind-the-scenes doc about Italian champions Juventus. Since overcoming a match-fixing scandal in the early 00s which saw them relegated to the second division, they’ve since re-emerged as the dominant force in Italian football, winning their seventh consecutive league title this past year. This series gives us a bit of insight into the players lives on and off the pitch. Watch on Netflix


Stop at Nothing: The Lance Armstrong Story (2014)

Lance Armstrong is in the spotlight in this detailed documentary, following what has been dubbed one of the biggest cons in sporting history. The doc examines the how and the why of Armstrong’s dramatic fall from grace. Watch on Netflix


Anthony Joshua: the Road to Klitschko

First made with the BBC, this documentary is an extraordinary opportunity to see a young fighter up close. The film follows Anthony Joshua as he prepares for the biggest fight of his career – and shows how the British fighter has radically reinvented what a heavyweight champion can be. Watch on Netflix


The Short Game (2013)

Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel produced this documentary about seven and eight-year-old golfers. The movie follows eight entrants as they compete in the 2012 US Kids Golf World Championships. Watch on Netflix


Messi

This biographical film of Lionel Messi doesn’t always get quite as up close and personal as admirers of the football icon might wish, but is still testament to the Barcelona and Argentina star’s enduring legacy. Watch on Netflix


The Battered Bastards of Baseball (2014)

This Netflix Original tells “one of baseball’s last great, unheralded true stories.” That of the Portland Mavericks, a “scrappy, independent baseball team of underdogs started by actor Bing Russell in the 1970s.” Watch on Netflix


Mary Kom

Netflix often has a very US-centred vision of sport and sporting achievement, but this Indian biopic bucks the trend. The film tells the real-life story of Olympic boxer Mary Kom who fought prejudice and sexism to become a global champion. Watch on Netflix


Resurface

A wave of emotion greets you in every scene of this documentary about injured service personnel who find solace in a surf therapy programme. Watch on Netflix 

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Pumping Iron (1977)

A young Arnold Schwarzenegger is the star of this documentary, following the 1975 IFBB Mr Universe and Mr Olympia competitions as 28-year-old Schwarzenegger vies for his sixth title. Watch on Netflix