at sixes and sevensWhat is the meaning of the phrase ‘at sixes and sevens’ in football?

  • Find out more about this phrase by reading the transcript below.
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(to be) At sixes and sevens

To be completely in a mess especially when describing poor defensive organisation. This suggests that one team is confused or in disarray allowing the opposing team to score or to win.

Example: The Arsenal defence were at sixes and sevens and the Tottenham forwards took full advantage in their 5-1 victory.

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2 comments
  • What does “do a job” mean here?

    After Rice hauls down Goretzka, three Germans stand over the free-kick right on the edge of the area in a central position. Havertz takes it but England’s wall do their job as they block in front of Pickford’s goal.

    • To do a job here means that the players did their job in the wall – they blocked the shot. To do a job could refer to other parts of the game as well – the defence did a job on the forwards means they stopped them from performing.

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