On this week’ s Learn English Through Football Podcast we’ve got lots of football language for those who love football and want to improve their English language skills. We’ll talk about the good, the bad and the ugly news from last week, feature some English phrases used in football, and look ahead to some of the big games in the Premier League including Liverpool versus Watford and of course the 6th Round of the FA Cup. There is a transcript to the show below and if you have questions or comments, email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org (Damon=DB; Damian=DF).
Learn English Through Football Podcast: 2018 FA Cup 6th Round and Champions League Draw
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Transcript of the show
DB: You are listening to Languagecaster’s football-language podcast. Hello and welcome to the show for all those who love the game of football and who want to improve their English skills too. My name’s Damon and I’m based in Tokyo, and down the line, hopefully in London is Damian. Damian, how are you?
DF: Hello Damon and hello to everyone – I hope you are all well and looking forward to the football this weekend. Well, the weather here is not too bad here at the moment; it’s been Spring-like over the past couple of days but it looks like more snow is on its way again! Damon, what do you think of the Champions League draw?
DB: Well, UEFA will be happy that the big guns have been kept apart – I’m talking about Bayern Munich, Manchester City, Real Madrid and Barcelona. A bit of shame for my team Liverpool to be drawn against the other English side City. It looks as though I’ll have to wait for the semi finals for Liverpool to get a glamour tie! Talking about glamour, what’s on the show?
DF: Well on this week’s show we are first going to take a look back at some of the football news from the week in the good, the bad and the ugly, and after that we will anwer some of our listeners’ questions, before explaining a football phrase from the week. After that we have a quiz question which this week is all about Manchester United and Brighton in the FA Cup and then we finish off the show with some predictions.
You’re listening to languagecaster.com (in Italian)
DB: Yes, you are listening to languagecaster.com and that message was in Italian. Right, next up is the good, the bad and the ugly where we look back at some of the big football news from the week. Remember that we have a full transcript of the whole podcast if you come along to languagecaster.com. And, if you like our podcast why not visit iTunes and leave a review or rating!
OK, Damian , what was good from the world of football this week?
DF: Well, I suppose I could say Sevilla after their 2-1 away win at Old Trafford in the last 16 of the Champions League, which saw the Andalucian side qualify for the quarter-finals. But instead I am going to talk about Leo Messi (again) after the Argentinian superstar scored his 100th goal in the Champions League after scoring twice against Chelsea in their 3-0 win. He really was the difference between the two sides, as first he beat the keeper at the near post to put Barca 1-0 up before skipping away from the Chelsea defence to set up the second and then of course he scored the third. Amazing stuff. How about bad from this week, Damon?
DB: Manchester United and Mourinho especially were poor in their Champions League games against Sevilla. Four shots on target over two legs against a good, but hardly intimidating Sevilla. Mourinho’s lack of ambition, setting up his team with two midfielders protecting a back four is baffling. The team is full of talent, but all the joy seems to have been taken out of them. Mourinho’s comments after the game were also bizarre. He mentioned the fact that Manchester United are used to losing at home in the Champions League, as his sides Real Madrid and Porto have beaten them. He was talking about his own side! Very poor from the Portuguese manager and the Manchester side.
DF: How about ugly?
DB: Well ugly has to be Jamie Carragher, the ex-Liverpool player and now TV pundit spitting at a man and his 14-year old daughter while driving back from the Manchester United v Liverpool game. The ex-defender had been taunted by the man, who was following Carragher’s car, but spitting was not the way to respond. Very ugly indeed and it was right that he was suspended by Sky Sports.
Football question: Wide
DF: Now, this week we also had a football-language question from Dave Alexander in Brazil who wrote to us via email. Hi Dave! He mentioned that he was a fan of the show (thank you) and then asked a couple of football-language questions which he came across while playing FIFA (career mode). He said that he had heard quite often the commentator using the word “challenge” and wanted to know if it meant the same as tackle. Well, yes David a challenge is indeed a tackle – you might even hear the phrase ‘50-50 challenge‘ for example which is when two players both tackle at the same time.
David then went on to ask about the word ‘wide’ and would it stand for “a long way off the target” and what about the phrase “narrowly wide“. Well, wide means outside of the goal, so for example, she shot wide/he hit the ball wide, which means that the player has missed. Narrowly wide means that a shot was close, while well wide is used to describe a shot that is nowhere near the goal! Narrowly wide would usually suggest that the ball is close but not close enough to hit the post (that would be clipped the post). I hope that helps
DB: And remember if any of our listeners wish to ask a football-language question or wish to make a comment you can also contact us by email at email@example.com or you can come along to our football-language forums which is something that Amadeu did recently. We asked for three words to describe your favourite team and as a Corinthians fan from Brazil he went for: faithful fans, gusto and grit and successful. Tammo on Facebook went for: hard-working, hard to beat, overachieving – he is an Eintracht Frankfurt fan – they are doing quite well in the Bundesliga this season. How about you Damian, how did you describe Tottenham?
DF: I went for: glory, attacking and underachievers. And you?
DB: As a Liverpool fan I went for red, passing and successful. As we said if you want to add three words to describe your favourite team then come along to the forum and let us know and we’ll read them out on the podcast. Now Tammo also asked a question about adjectives to describe a holding midfielder – I suppose we could use phrases such as disciplined, hard-working and a good organiser – a player who makes the team tick. There is of course the phrase ‘the Makélélé role’ named after the former Chelsea, Real Madrid and France international holding midfielder who might be one of the best in that position.
DF: It’s also very easy to subscribe to our weekly podcast – you can do this with i-tunes, tunedin, stitcher or any other podcast player and make sure you also tell your friends, and as we said earlier, leave a review or rating. Thank you.
DB: OK, now it’s time for our quiz question this week and it is related to the FA Cup 6th round match between Brighton and Manchester United that is taking place this weekend. These two sides have previously met in an FA Cup final – Manchester United beat the already-relegated Brighton 4-0 in a replay – but we want to know in which year did this happen? Was it:
We’ll have the answer at the end of the show.
DB: Right, next up we will explain some football language from the week.
Football Language: Skip past/Skip by/Skip away from
DF: Some players have pace and power to get by an opponent, others rely on skill or passing technique. Then there is Lionel Messi who simply does what he pleases on the football pitch. He shimmies, he dribbles, he has pace, a low centre of gravity and wonderful technique. Using all of these skills he can move away from opponents easily – he can skip past defenders as if they are not there. To skip is a form of jumping – boxers often skip to keep fit – but when it is used with a particle it suggests that someone is moving quickly and gracefully.
Sometimes you will hear the phrase skip by a defender or skip away from a defender and these are similar in meaning: the player moves quickly and effortlessly away from the opponent. Here’s an example from the Champions League game between Barcelona and Chelsea from this week: Leo Messi skipped past two Chelsea defenders in the first half to set up Dembele for Barca’s second. To skip past or to skip by an opponent.
DB: Right, next up is our predictions section.
FA Cup 6th Round: Swansea City v Tottenham
DF: OK, it’s the 6th round of the FA Cup in England this weekend and my team Spurs are away at Swansea City who have hit a good run of form recently – they are playing much more confidently under their manager Carlos Carvalhal – but I would be disappointed if Tottenham lost this one. Maybe 2-1 to Spurs but with no Kane or Alli it will be difficult. Damon?
DB: 2-0 Spurs. You’ll coast through to the semis.
FA Cup 6th Round: Manchester United v Brighton
DB: Can Manchester United get their season back on track after being dumped out of the Champions League. I think they will. 2-0 to Manchester United. Damian?
DF: I suppose United will bounce back after their defeat against Sevilla but I have a feeling that Brighton might cause an upset and win at Old Trafford. They have a poor away record, do not score many goals and were thrashed last week but maybe 1-0 to Brighton!
Premier League: Liverpool v Watford
DB: And our final game is Liverpool v Watford in the league. I remember watching the reverse fixture in a bar in Helsinki back in August. And that ended 3-3. What about this time Damian?
DF: This should be a regulation home win. 3-0 to Liverpool.
DB: I’m hoping so. 3-0 for me too!
DF: Right, before we say goodbye, let’s get the answer to the quiz question. We wanted to know when Manchester United played Brighton in the FA Cup final, Damon?
DB: Well, the two sides met in the 1983 final and as you have already mentioned United defeated Brighton 4-0 in a replay. Well done if you got that right and of course we’ll have another quiz question next week.
DF: OK, that’s all for this week. Enjoy all of the football and next week we’ll be discussing the London derby between Chelsea and Spurs. Bye bye.