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Weekly Football Phrase: Against the run of play

Every week, brings you words or phrases from the footballing news. Today we explain the phrase ‘against the run of play’. You can understand more about the word or phrase by reading the transcript below. You can also find many more examples by going to our football cliches page here and our huge football glossary here. If you have any suggestions or questions then you can contact us at

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This week’s football phrase is ‘against the run of play‘, which is used to describe a situation when a team scores a goal when they probably do not deserve to. One team may be playing much better and creating many chances to score but then the other team scores – often without having created any previous chances. In this case we say that a team has scored against the run of play. In this week’s Champions League group match between Ajax and Manchester City, Samir Nasri scored for City against the run of play after Ajax had created a lot of earlier chances. Despite scoring against the run of play City still went on to lose. Against the run of play.

Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football

Welcome to the website that helps students interested in football improve their English language skills. Soccer fans can enhance these skills with lots of free language resources: a weekly podcast, football phrases, explanations of football vocabulary, football cliches, worksheets, quizzes and much more at

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