In this short football language podcast we take a look at the phrase ‘interim manager‘ which has been in the news this weekend due to Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s departure from Manchester United. There is a transcript with this listening activity along with some vocabulary practice and you can also check out our football glossary and football cliches pages for hundreds more explanations of the language of soccer. If you have questions or comments about this or any other phrase then email us at:

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Learning English Through Football Podcast: Interim Manager

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DF: Hello everyone, this is Damian from the Learning English Through Football team. I hope we are all doing well and that we have enjoyed the football this week. Now, the big story here in the UK this weekend is Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s departure from Manchester United after five defeats in the past seven games and a general poor level of performance over the season. The club sacked Solskjær and are now looking for a new manager so they have appointed an interim manager in the meantime while they continue this search. And so this phrase ‘interim manager‘ will be the focus of this short podcast.

Stinger: You are listening to (in Swahili).

Don’t forget we also have a transcript to go with this podcast, while if you have any questions or comments about any of the football language in this report then you can contact us at: or ask a question on our football language forum.

Interim Manager

With the sacking of Ole Gunnar Solskjær over the weekend, Manchester United are looking for a new manager. However, as they don’t have anyone lined up (or ready) to take over they have decided that former assistant manager Michael Carrick will oversee the team – so, hell be in charge, while they search for an interim manager who will look after the club until the end of the season. So an interim boss is a manager who will look after the club until a new permanent manager has been chosen. The word ‘interim‘ is connected to time and generally means the time between one action and another; so it is something temporary. An interim manager, therefore, is not expected to be in charge for a long time but maybe only a few matches, although in United’s case it seems that the interim manager would stay until the end of this season. Now, a similar expression is a caretaker manager – a manager that ‘takes care of’ or ‘looks after’ the post until a permanent manager is appointed – of course we never really know how permanent a football manager is these days anyway!

Ironically, Solskjær began his managerial career at Manchester United as a temporary manager although he was named as caretaker manager rather than interim manager back in 2018 when he took over at Old Trafford. Then after a successful run of form, in which he won 14 of his first 19 games, he was appointed full-time manager – he signed on a permanent basis for the club.

Stinger: You are listening to (in Irish).

DF: Yes, that message was in Irish and if you’d like to send a message in any language for our podcast then contact us here at – we’d love to hear from you.

OK, that’s it for this short podcast in which we’ve looked at the phrase ‘interim manager‘ or ‘interim boss’. Maybe you can let us know how we might say this phrase in another language and you can do this by adding a comment below our post or by dropping us a line at:

Don’t forget you can also come along to our forum where you can ask or answer any questions you have on football language. Now, recently we have looked at the phrase, ‘launch the ball‘ and also had a discussion on the use of ‘would‘ in some of our explanations of football language. Come along and participate in our football language community on the forums.

And don’t forget there is a transcript for this report and of course we have a huge glossary of football language here at OK, myself and Damon, who is in Tokyo of course, will be back soon with some more football language. Enjoy all the football this week – Champions League games I see – and we’ll see you again soon. Bye bye.

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Learn English Through Football

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Football GlossaryEpisode 786