(to) Go down to the wire

go down to the wireWhen a game, or more usually a league, has an exciting or tight finish. The result is not known until the very end. Today’s English for football phrase is go down to the wire. Most European leagues are coming to the end of their season. In the English league, Manchester United only lead Chelsea by three points. In the Dutch league, there are three teams on equal points at the top: AZ Alkmaar, Ajax and PSV. It is going to be an exciting finish in both these leagues and other leagues too. When we have this situation, we say ‘the season’s going to go down to the wire‘. We mean that we don’t know who will win, and we will not know until maybe the last game. Originally, this phrase was used in horse racing, when two horses were racing to the line ‘neck and neck’ – close together. The line was a thin tape, or wire. Who is going to win in the Dutch league? It’s too difficult to say. It’s going to go down to the wire.

  • Example: The 2011-12 season in England went down to the wire as Manchester City won in the final minute of the last game of the season.
  • Example: It looks like the relegation spots will not be decided until the final game of the season – it will go down to the wire.
Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and if you have any suggestions, contact us at admin@languagecaster.com

Contact Us

    Subscribe to
    Learn English Through Football

    Or subscribe with your favorite app by using the address below

    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 languagecaster.com.

    Google | Facebook | Twitter | Mail | Website

    Join the discussion

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

    More from this show

    C-DEpisode 95