Football Language: (to) Leave Your Foot In

Leave Your Foot InThis short football language post introduces the phrase ‘to leave your foot in’, a phrase connected with tackles. If you have questions or comments, email us at:

Football Language: Leave Your Foot In

To leave your foot in means to first go for the ball but continue after the ball has been won, or lost, and kick the opponent. The ‘in‘ in the phrase refers to the tackle, giving ‘in the tackle’. so, if you leave your foot in the tackle, it means your foot is used to catch, kick, or stamp on the opposing player. The opposite is to pull out of a tackle, and a player does this when they realize they cannot get the ball without fouling the other player. In contrast, a player who leaves his or her foot in, does so deliberately, meaning to foul, or even hurt, the other player. The player definitely decides to foul the opponent, and it is, therefore, a nasty challenge, one deserving of a yellow or even a red card.

  • Example: Ten minutes into the second half, Jack went into a tackle with Stevie May and left his foot in to such an extent that the striker was fortunate to avoid a bad injury. (BBC, 2017)

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