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2022 World Cup Language Podcast: Last 16 Netherlands v USA – March into the Quarter-finals

Today’s World Cup language podcast looks at the phrase, ‘march into the quarter-finals‘ which was used after the Dutch victory over the USA in the first of the last-16 matches at the 2022 World Cup. You can read the transcript for this podcast below, while you can also check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and visit our site to access all our previous posts and podcasts. If you have any suggestions or questions then you can contact us at

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2022 World Cup Language Podcast: Last 16 Netherlands v USA – March into the Quarter-finals

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DF: Hello again everyone and welcome to – the football-language podcast for learners and teachers of English. I’m Damian and I’m here in London where the weather is getting colder – it’s strange to see a World Cup on television with all that sunshine while we sit here shivering! OK, not shivering but definitely not as hot as it is in Qatar. I wonder what the weather is like in Japan where of course the other member of the Languagecaster team, that’s Damon, is based? Now, here at Languagecaster we have been trying to publish a World Cup language podcast each day where we explain some of the language from the Qatar World Cup (although we are a little behind due to our work commitments). Damon recently posted a podcast on the phrase ‘side footer‘ from the Senegal versus Ecuador match and looked at the phrases ‘cut back‘ and ‘bundle home‘ from the Japan against Spain match, while I looked at the phrase ‘peach of a free kick‘ from the Mexico vs Saudi Arabia game. All three of those matches were from the group stages but over the next couple of days we’ll be looking at some of the language that emerged from the first of the knock-out rounds and that is of course the round of 16 or the last 16. In particular on today’s show – day 14 – we’ll focus on the phrase ‘march into the quarter-finals‘ from the Netherlands win over the USA.

Stinger: You are listening to (from the Netherlands)

Dutch march into World Cup quarter-finals as United States bow out in Qatar (, December 3 2022)
This is how Eurosport described the victory for the Netherlands against the USA in the first of the last-16 knock-out matches from the 2022 World Cup. The last-16 qualifiers is the set of games before the quarter-final so this round of matches decides the last eight teams in the tournament. If a team wins their last-16 match then they move into the next round; they qualify for the quarter-final match. In this match report, the headline uses the verb ‘to march into the quarter final‘ which means that the Dutch qualified for the last eight in an easy way – they easily defeated the USA team. The phrase, ‘march into‘ also suggests that they qualified with confidence – I don’t think we could say that a team marched into the next round by winning just 1-0. The headline also mentions that the US team ‘bowed out‘ of the competition which means they were knocked out or eliminated from the tournament. I think this phrase ‘to bow out‘ also suggests that they did not really play that well. Again, I don’t think we would hear the phrase ‘bow out‘ if a team was beaten 4-3 after extra time. What do you think? Are there any phrases like these ones – to bow out of a tournament or to march into the next round? If so, then let us know.

Stinger: You are listening to (from a Polish fan)


Now, if you want to ask us any football-language questions or simply say hello during this World Cup then you can do so by adding a comment on our site here or by using our forum. You can also send us an email at and you can also look out for us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and thanks to everyone who’s been in contact. 

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Stinger: You are listening to (from a Brazilian fan).


DB: Yes, you are listening to languagecaster and that message was from a Brazilian supporter – I wonder if they’re feeling confident? It would be great to hear from anyone else who might like to share this message, ‘you are listening to‘. Don’t forget there’s a transcript to this short podcast and there’s lots of vocabulary support which you can access by coming along to our site. We think it’s a great resource for those learning and teaching the language.

OK, that’s it for this podcast in which we looked at the phrases ‘to march into the next round‘ and ‘to bow out‘ of a competition. We’ll be back with more World Cup language tomorrow. Enjoy all the football and we’ll see you then. Bye bye!

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