Football Language Podcast: Knock A Team Out Of The Cup

In this short football language post we explain the expression ‘Knock A Team Out Of The Cup‘. Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here. If you have any suggestions, contact us at

Football Language Podcast: Knock A Team Out Of The Cup

DF: Hello everyone, this is Damian from the Learning English Through Football team. I hope we are all doing well and staying safe wherever we are in the world. Now, this week’s football language is all about when a team is beaten in cup football; and the phrase is, ‘to be knocked out of the cup’. In cup football, such as the FA Cup in England or the Copa del Rey in Spain, one team progresses to the next round if they win with the other team leaving the competition and we can say that this team has been knocked out of the cup. Let’s have a look at an example with the phrase:

  • Leicester knocked Brentford out of the Cup
  • Brentford were knocked out of the Cup (by Leicester)

In the first example, Leicester appear first in the sentence as the emphasis is on them winning – they defeated Brentford, while in the second example the focus is on the defeated side, Brentford – they were knocked out of the cup. Now sometimes we can say ‘by Leicester’ if you want to add more information.

Here’s another example, this time from the BBC website, after this weekend’s FA Cup 4th Round tie between Southampton and last season’s winners, Arsenal.

Example: A strong Southampton side knocked holders Arsenal out of the FA Cup in the fourth round courtesy of a first-half own goal on Saturday.

Stinger: You are listening to (in French).

DF: Thanks everyone for listening – we hope you enjoyed our look at the phrase ‘knock a team out of a cup‘. Listen out for examples of this phrase when you are watching cup football and maybe you can let us know how we would say this in another language. Drop us a line at or, of course, you can leave a comment in the section below the post here at languagecaster.

Don’t forget there is also a transcript for this report which can be accessed for free here at OK, myself and Damon, who of course is in Tokyo, will be back this weekend with some more football language. Enjoy all the football this week and we’ll see you soon. Bye bye.

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PodcastEpisode 682