Football Language Podcast: June 2020 – June 2020 Everton v Liverpool. On this week’s football-language podcast we welcome back the Premier League and look back at some of the games that have already been played and of course look ahead to some more of the games taking place. We also explain a football language expression about the rustiness of some of the players after three months without any football. There is also a football-language question about the word ‘to ping’ and we have predictions – lots of predictions!
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Football Language Podcast: June 2020 Everton v Liverpool
DB: You are listening to languagecaster.com. Welcome everyone to the show for all those who love the beautiful game of football and who are also interested in improving their English language skills. My name is Damon and I’m based in Tokyo, which has just lifted its COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, so all shops and restaurants can open and there are no travel restrictions. Still a bit strange and social distancing and masks are strongly recommended. And this coincides with the return of the Premier League this week, which joined other major football leagues in Europe and elsewhere in restarting. I enjoyed watching a few of the Premier League games, including Manchester City versus Arsenal and Tottenham vs Manchester United. Damian, how do you feel with the point Spurs got against Man United and how is the lockdown in England?
DF: Hello Damon and hi to everyone listening in – we hope you are all well. Things here in London are moving towards a lifting of lockdown but there are still many restrictions including of course that football matches have to be played in empty stadiums. But at least football is back!
All Premier League games are being shown live on TV here in the UK and as we have been starved of football for over 100 days I have managed to see all of them so far as well as a couple of La Liga games! Watching Spurs play was strange in front of no fans in their new stadium but if I’d been offered a point before the game started I would have taken it but then being one-nil up with ten minutes to go I was disappointed that United equalised from the penalty spot. A 1-1 draw was a fair result I suppose. How about you with Liverpool in the derby?
DB: Like you, the result was fair. Neither side really carried much attacking threat, but Everton could have nicked it at the end. Another point and five more to go to win the title. I think it might be more difficult than some people think for Liverpool to get those five points!
DF: OK, now what’s on the rest of the show?
DB: OK, we’ll start with a little review of the football news, followed by some English for football language, and this week we explain ‘rusty‘ a word connected with this strange season as players return to action after the break. We also have a football-language quiz question which this week looks at the verb ‘to ping’. After that, we’ll take a look back at some of the games this weekend including the big one, for me at least, which was the Merseyside derby between Everton and Liverpool we’ve already mentioned.
You are listening to languagecaster.com (in Welsh)
DF: Yes, you are listening to languagecaster.com and that message was in Welsh. Remember that you can send on a message in your own language to us here at email@example.com.
DB: OK, let’s kick off with some good news from the football world. Damian, what good news story have you chosen?
Football News – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
DF: Well, it was not a huge surprise but Bayern Munich wrapped up their eighth Bundesliga title in a row after defeating Werder Bremen 1-0 last Wednesday. They followed that up with another win at the weekend over Freiburg – their 12th in succession – to move ten points clear of second place Dortmund. Robert Lewandowski scored another brace in that game to take his tally for the season to 33 in the league – a record for most goals by a foreign player in Germany. The Bavarian side play Leverkusen in the German cup final in two weeks and of course are still in the Champions League so will be eyeing a treble.
DF: Well done to Napoli who also won some silverware as they defeated Juventus 4-2 in a penalty shoot out to win the Italian Cup. The final went to penalties after the game had finished scoreless and this was the first time in six years that Napoli have won a trophy and completes a remarkable turn around for a club that was in turmoil only six months ago.
Now, we have mentioned the Black Lives Matter campaign here on the podcast over the past few weeks but in the opening games in England this weekend there were some remarkable images as players not only wore the campaign slogan on their shirts instead of their names but also every player from every team has taken the knee before kick off to show their support for the Black Lives Matter movement. Very powerful images have been shown around the world which is hopefully a start to making changes within the game and indeed the wider society.
DB: Yes, great stuff.
DB: Now for bad, well the London side Arsenal will be feeling pretty bad after their first two games which saw them lose twice: the first of them a comprehensive loss and then the second occurred after conceding very late on against relegation-threatened Brighton. In addition, they have had a player sent off, another facing disciplinary action after hitting a Brighton player after the final whistle and they have also had three serious injuries including to their first-choice keeper, Bernd Leno.
Pretty bad in Russia too for Rostov who were fourth in the top flight and fighting for the title, as six of their first team players tested positive for COVID-19, meaning that the whole first team and coaching staff had to be quarantined – isolated for two weeks. The game could have been postponed if their opponents, newly-formed Sochi, agreed, but they didn’t – causing a lot of anger among football fans in Russia. Rostov, from the south of Russia had to field a youth team, and they went on to lose 10-1 and effectively have their title hopes dashed. What about other bad storis from the week Damian?
DF: Well, can I mention the howler, the massive mistake, in the Aston Villa versus Sheffield United game? The Blades, Sheffield United, thought they’d broken the deadlock of a tight game, when a goalmouth scramble saw the ball carried over the line by the Villa keeper. Nyland clearly had the ball in his arms behind the post, but incredibly the goal-line technology didn’t function and the referee didn’t receive a signal indicating a goal. A howler from the technology as a win would have seen Sheffield United go equal on points with Manchester United in fifth place and keep up their chase for an incredible Champions League place.
Stinger: You are listening to languagecaster.com (in Dutch)
DF: Yes, you are listening to languagecaster.com and that message was in Dutch. Here’s Damon with this week’s football language quiz question.
Football Language Quiz: Ping
DB: It’s time for a football-language quiz question and this week we look at the verb ‘to ping’. Very simply, we want to know what is the meaning of the verb ‘to ping’ – does it mean:
- To badly mishit a shot
- To score a goal with your head
- To foul a player in a really bad way
- To drive or pass the ball with accuracy
And we’ll have the answer at the end of the show. Next, here’s Damian with some more language of football.
Football Language: Rustiness/To be rusty
DF: The Premier League has recently restarted after a break of over 100 days due to the Covid pandemic and while players have had some time to prepare – maybe three or four weeks of training – it is clear that many are a little rusty. Now rust is something that happens when metal is oxidised – it becomes a brownish, reddish colour. But to be rusty also means that your skills are not as good as they once were because of a lack of practice and this is something that is happening with footballers at the moment as they return to action after the long lay off.
Players need to regain match fitness in order to become sharper, to do things quicker and of course to last a full 90 minutes. While watching recent games on TV, I have heard the commentators use such phrases as an ‘error-strewn game‘ which is a match with a lot of mistakes; ‘sloppy passes’ (maybe they have been over or under-hit) which are passes that are misplaced as they fail to reach their intended target. Players are not quite up to speed and this means their play may be lacking in quality as they take a while to get match fit. Hopefully, once they have played a couple more matches they should start to regain fitness and become sharper and shake off the rustiness.
Other phrases we have looked at this week on our site include showboat and play to the crowd, as well as nil nil written all over it. Come to the glossary section on languagecaster.com to check them out.
DB: OK, with our football language section finished that can only mean one thing – predictions and a look at some upcoming matches.
DF: Well, with lots of leagues returning after the lockdown we thought it would be an idea to run a new end-of-season predictions competition. Simply come along to the site and try and take on Damon and myself in the predictions battle. It’s three points for a win and one for a draw – register for the 2020 Post-Lockdown League and let us know what you think.
First up, let’s take a look back at two big games that were played on Sunday: The Merseyside derby between Everton and Liverpool and the game between Real Madrid and Real Sociedad from la Liga.
Premier League: Everton v Liverpool (June 21st)
DB: This was so strange with no fans. It’s somehow OK watching big games with other teams, but when it is a team you support and it’s their derby, it just feels weird. I’d have been happy with a draw, which is what we usually get when we travel to Everton and Goodison Park, but with no home fans, maybe I thought that might favour Liverpool a bit. It was indeed a draw 0-0, not the 1-1 I thought. Liverpool looked a bit rusty but will be fairly pleased to get a point in a tricky away fixture.
DF: I thought this game would finish as a draw too – maybe 0-0, a scoreless draw as both sides got used to football after lockdown and but
La Liga: Real Sociedad v Real Madrid (June 21st)
DB: OK, next is La Liga and Real Madrid v Real Sociedad. In the La Liga two-horse race, Barcelona dropped points drawing 0-0 with Sevilla while Real Madrid won emphatically 3-0 against Valencia in mid-week and then defeated Real Sociedad away at the weekend. This has sent Los Blancos top of the table as they have a better head-to-head record than their rivals Barcelona after winning one clasico and drawing the other earlier in the season. I thought this would be another win for Los Blancos – 2-0.
DF: Yes, Real Sociedad have not been playing so well since the restart so I expected them to lose this game. I went for 2-1 to Madrid and that was the final score.
Premier League: Tottenham vs West Ham United (June 23rd)
DB: A London derby! Tottenham will easily win this one. 2-0 to Spurs and The Hammers will sink further into the relegation zone.
DF: Maybe. I saw West Ham lose to Wolves on Saturday and they are right in the relegation battle, particularly as their run-in is a tough one. Normally West Ham raise their game against Tottenham but with no fans in the stadium it might be a different story… maybe a 2-1 win for Spurs.
Premier League: Manchester United vs Sheffield United (June 24th)
DB: Sheffield United could have been on equal points with Manchester United if their goal against Aston Villa had stood but after another defeat at the weekend, this time against Newcastle, their European hopes look under threat. Away, and empty, Old Trafford is a big challenge and the Blades didn’t look particularly good against Villa or Newcastle in their previous two fixtures. Manchester United, on the other hand, showed they have a lot of belief after they came back late against Tottenham. A 1-0 home win.
DF: I think this is an easy win for United for me – maybe 3-0.
And don’t forget to come along to the site and let us know your predictions of these and many other games over the next six weeks.
Football Language Quiz Answer
DB: OK, just before we go, let’s get the answer to our quiz question. We wanted to know which of the following is a description of the verb ‘to ping’?
- To badly mishit a shot
- To score with your head
- To foul a player in a bad way
- To drive/pass the ball with accuracy
DB: Damian, which one is it?
DF: Well, to ping a ball in football is to hit the ball hard, fast and accurately. So you might see a crossfield pass… people like Toni Kroos of Real Madrid or Paul Scholes when he was playing for Manchester United would ping the ball from left to right or from right to left.
DF: And that brings us to the end of the show. Remember that you can contact us here at languagecaster through our various social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram. Come along to our forums, ask a question or just drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. Take care everyone – stay safe and we’ll see you soon.