In this football language post we explain the football expression ‘to oust ‘ which is often used to talk about a team going out of a competition. Don’t forget we have hundreds more explanations of football language in our football glossary and we also have a page full of football cliches. If you have questions or comments about this or any other phrase then email us at:

Football Expression: To oust/To be ousted

The verb ‘to oust‘ means to remove or to expel something and in football you might hear this phrase used when one teams knocks another team out of a competition. So, if a team was ousted from the World Cup it means they were knocked out and have to go home, so it is not just a defeat, it’s a defeat that sends a team out of a competition. For example, Spain lost to Switzerland in a group game at the start of the 2010 World Cup but they were not ousted from the tournament as they had two more group matches left to repair the damage, which they did and then went on to win the competition. However, Spain were ousted by hosts Russia in the last-16 game of the 2018 World Cup (on penalties) – they were defeated and went out of the competition.

In the first of the two examples below, ‘ousted‘ is used as an adjective phrase to describe the German side (‘the ousted World Cup heavyweights’) after they were defeated by South Korea – the Koreans didn’t oust the Germans but as they didn’t qualify for the next round they can be described as ‘ousted‘. In the second example, it is used as a verb – Italy knocks out Nigeria; Italy ousts Nigeria – the African side were ousted by the Italians (after extra time).

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CompetitionsEpisode 913