English for Football Phrase: Week 40 – Goal poacher

Each week we explain a soccer phrase or cliché on our weekly languagecaster podcast. You can find many more examples by going to our football clichés here.

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This week’s English for football phrase is goal poacher. To poach is a verb which means to steal, to take illegally from someone’s land – for example hunting rabbits, ducks, deer from private property. The word poach therefore means to do something secretly without people knowing, to do something sneaky. The phrase goal poacher in football means a striker that ‘steals’ goals. A goal poacher scores a lot of opportunistic goals usually from around the six-yard area. This type of player is highly skilled at finding the right opportunity to steal behind the defence and score. This week in the Europa League final, Diego Forlan proved himself to be a goal poacher, appearing four minutes from extra time to hit a deflected winning goal for Atletico Madrid.

Goal poacher

Read about another famous goal poacher, Gerd Müller, here.

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I was born and brought up near Chester in the north west of England. I have always loved playing and talking about sport, especially football!
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Learn English Through FootballWelcome to the website that helps students interested in football improve their English language skills. Football fans can practise with lots of free language resources, including football-language podcasts and our huge football-language glossary.

Football GlossaryEpisode 54